Listening to upbeat music, or any kind of music for that matter, can have a major impact on the way you feel.
But what is it about music that moves us so much? There’s a lot of scientific research devoted to answering this question. So let’s take a look at what that research has uncovered.
Spotlight On Mental Health: Can Music Affect Your Mood And Emotions?
Listening to music can move you deeply. Research is starting to explain exactly why that happens. In one study, researchers looked at people who love instrumental music. They analyzed the brain activity of the participants and came up with some interesting findings.
As it turns out, music stimulates the release of dopamine. That’s a hormone associated with feelings of pleasure.
When we hear a favorite song, that stimulates brain activity that can actually lead to a sense of euphoria. Researchers believe this happens because we’re anticipating the arrival of our favorite part of the song.1
Can Listening To Music Provide Health Benefits?
There’s not only evidence that a favorite song may provide pleasure and support your mood, but it might even help support your overall health as well. In fact, the effects of music may support healthy blood circulation and possibly help with stress and anxiety.
It seems that music has an effect on certain chemical reactions in the brain. These reactions not only support your mood, they may also be able to support cognitive function and attention span.
In one study, researchers found that listening to music helps reduce stress in people suffering from problems involving cognition. The benefits were so powerful they were found comparable to those associated with meditation.2
What Are Some Of The Other Health Benefits Associated With Listening To Music?
In one study, researchers looked at surgery patients who listened to music before, during, or after their procedure. They found that the patients experienced not only less anxiety but also less physical discomfort than other patients who didn’t listen to music.3
Music can help our physical and mental health in several other ways. Here are just a few.
- Stress reaction – Listening to music before a stressful situation, such as a test, may help the nervous system recover faster after the situation has passed.4
Boosting your mood – Music can help with self-understanding, making you feel more connected with others. It can also lift you out of the malaise associated with feelings such as fear and regret.5
- Increasing clarity – As the name implies, designer music is music designed to have a specific effect. One study showed that people who listen to designer music not only have increased mental clarity, but also increased relaxation and vigor. They also had decreased feelings of tension and fatigue.6
- Increased learning capacity – Music helps people focus more clearly, putting them in a better frame of mind to learn. Instrumental music seems to be particularly effective in helping to increase concentration.7
- Improving sleep quality – Relaxing music before bedtime may not only help you get to sleep faster, it might also help you get a longer, more restful night of sleep.8
Different Types Of Music For Your Different Moods: Upbeat Music, Sad Songs, And Calming Music
If you’re like most, you tend to listen to music that fits your mood at a particular time. If you’re feeling sad, for example, you might listen to sad songs. If you’re angry, aggressive music might help release some of the frustration you’re experiencing. Your choice of music may reflect how you’re feeling at any given moment.
So can you actually control or change your mood, depending on the rhythm of a particular song you choose to listen to? Possibly. Here’s something you can try: Consider turning on some upbeat music the first thing after you wake up in the morning to get you going. Or, if you’re having a really busy, chaotic day, listen to a soothing song to try to calm your mind a little.
It Doesn’t Matter What Kind of Music You Listen To – Just Listen
You might enjoy listening to upbeat music to get your heart rate going when you work out. Or you might enjoy listening to calm music to chill out. But no matter what your musical preference might be, you’re sure to reap some major benefits.
There are times however, when music just isn’t enough to fully raise your spirits. There’s no guarantee, of course, that music will provide happiness if you’re going through a rough time. If you’re having an issue that affects your mental health, making it hard just to get through the day, talk with your doctor. There is absolutely no shame in seeking professional help.
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