Music Makers May Be Healthier
Music-Making Linked to Stress Reduction
Groundbreaking scientific research has recently revealed a potent link among music-making, stress reduction and general health that clearly demonstrates the many benefits of making music, in addition to it being very enjoyable.
Stress is widespread in today's society. The pace and pressures of life are constant causes of stress, and ongoing exposure to stress can increase your likelihood of such conditions as heart disease, cancer, infections, diabetes, and autoimmune disorders. Additionally, no two people react to stress in the same way, making dealing with stress a complex matter.
Music May Be the Answer
In a recent scientific study, recreational music making was shown to dramatically reduce stress levels on a very basic human level. The significance of the study is that fact that specific genome markers for stress were positively affected through recreational music making activities. There were no therapeutic drugs or other medical therapies applied to the participants in the study. Furthermore, the participants were not experienced music-makers and considered themselves to be "non-musical."
Barry Bittman, M.D., principal investigator of the study, states, "While traditional musical instruction might eventually lead to Carnegie Hall, I now consider recreational music making an antidote to stress."
Earlier Study Reveals the Wellness Benefits of Music Making
The Music Making and Wellness Project demonstrates that group organ classes given to older people had significant effects on increasing levels of Human Growth Hormone (HGH). Increased levels of HGH can have a positive impact on aging phenomena such as osteoporosis, energy levels, muscle mass, and aches and pains. The study further suggested that older people involved in organ classes experienced:
Decreased levels of anxiety.
Decreased feelings of loneliness.
Furthermore, making music may significantly improve the quality of life and feelings of well-being. Making music helps people relax, feel better, and deal positively with stress. Making music may also enhance the immune system and help fight disease.
Making Music May Aid in the Prevention of Alzheimer's
A team of researchers, led by Joe Verghese, M.D., reported that participation in a variety of leisure activities may lower the risk of developing certain forms of dementia, including Alzheimer's, among older adults. The five-year study showed that leisure activities such as reading, playing board games, playing a musical instrument, and dancing, were connected with a reduction in the risk of dementia. Overall, the research team discovered that those regularly participating in leisure activities may experience a 63 percent risk reduction for dementia, with those being most active having the lowest risk.
Play What You Like, Like What You Play
Click the EZ2 Virtual Orchestra at left, to find out how easy it is to enjoy making music with even just one finger.
Want to help by volunteering?
Call Doug Lauts at 662-469-5350 or email him at [email protected]
Amro Music wants to help you be able to reach out and help people make music in a fun and easy way.
• Early retired, or near retirement
• Healthcare student
• Healthcare provider
Local music and wellness volunteer opportunities:
• Page Robbins Adult Day Center, Collierville, TN
• VA Medical Center, Memphis, TN
• Youth Villages, Bartlett, TN, Arlington, TN
(We may also be able to approach organizations where volunteer candidates already have a relationship.)
Lowrey Music and Wellness (LMW) volunteers engage patients, residents, and others in fun and easy music-making interventions. The outcome of the evidence-based activity includes redirection of leisure time, mood elevation, and reduced anxiety, depression, and sense of loneliness.
Upon successful completion of the four-week training program, (prior music experience is not required, but may be helpful) volunteers will:
• show others how to make music using the adaptive features of the Lowrey Virtual Orchestra, and foster socialization,
• play their own preferred music,
• progress toward improved physical, mental, and social wellbeing.
To Volunteer, please call Doug Lauts at 662-469-5350 or email him at [email protected]