Music Therapy is an established profession in which music is used as therapy.
It’s use of musical “interventions” in a therapeutic relationship by professionals who has completed an approved music therapy program. Music therapy consists of a process where the music therapist uses music to help clients improve their physical and mental health in all of its facets: physical, emotional, mental, social, aesthetic, and spiritual; addressing the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of individuals.
A qualified music therapist provides treatment that includes singing, moving/dancing and/or listening to music. Through therapeutic musical involvement a client’s abilities are strengthened and transferred to other areas of their lives. Music therapy can provide ways of communication for those who find it difficult to express themselves in words.
Research on music therapy supports its effectiveness in many areas of physical rehabilitation, facilitating movement, increasing a person’s s ability to motivate and engage in their own treatment, providing emotional support for both client and their family; providing an outlet for expressing their feeling through music.
Music therapy primarily helps clients improve health in several areas: cognitive function, motor and social skills, emotional development, and quality of life through free improvisation, singing, listening, discussing, and moving to music to achieve those goals.
Music therapists are found in nearly every area of therapy, and are commonly found in “developmental” therapy, such as communication, motor skills, and with individuals with special needs, using songwriting and listening, and rhythmic musical exercises for physical rehabilitation in stroke victims.
“Music has charms to soothe the savage breast” says the old adage. Music also has the power to heal a troubled mind and body.