How Music Affects the Brain

By Pranjal Karanjkar ('22)


Photo courtesy of Wix

According to ashford.edu, studies show that music not only plays a role in the brain development, learning and mood, but it can also affect a person's health. Whether it is listening to music, or playing an instrument, the effects of music on the brain are mostly positive.


Additionally, music also is used for health reasons. According to music therapy.org, music therapy is basically when people with specific illnesses get treated through creating, listening to or singing music.


Professionals with a background of music provide the proper therapy to those who need it. Illnesses such as depression, anxiety, and insomnia may all be through music therapy.


Degruyter.com posted an abstract from a study from the International Journal on Disability and Human Development which compared children with music training for two or more years, to children with no music training. The kids who had been musically inclined and musically trained performed much better in the conducted brain tests. The outcome was that music training results in better temporal and auditory processing.


Private local tutor, and experienced musician in the Eastern Wind Symphony, Ms. Cheryl Glitz stated her experience with music as an expert.


She said, “I've always enjoyed playing the clarinet. To such an extent that I even made it my career. I enjoy playing the clarinet because it provides as a distraction to certain problems in my life.”


As shown, music also has effects on a person's mood. Typically making them less stressed. In an article on psychologytoday.com, an expert stated, “Because music can have such an impact on a person’s mindset and well-being, it should come as no surprise that music therapy has been studied for use in managing numerous medical conditions."


Ms. Glitz also referred to playing as a “stress-reliever”.


Freshman Camila Olivarez also stated her views on music and the effects of it.


She said, “I play percussion, and it makes me less stressed. Keeping up with school work is hard and anytime I need to de-stress, I play.”


Likewise, freshman Srishti Thakur said “I play the bassoon. It is a very hard instrument… I like to play because it challenges me to think and is very enjoyable to me.”


The effects of music on the brain are clearly significant. In fact, in SBHS there are a number of music programs that students are a part of. Some include marching band, orchestra, choir and regular band. Overall, music has many positive aspects on the brain, and seems to be a beneficial part of education.

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