Essay about Alternative Methods of Healing: Music Therapy

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Alternative methods of healing have been utilized by non-western medicine for generations. The use of acupuncture to heal everything from seasickness to muscle soreness is well documented and widely used. Physical therapy is often a precursor to surgery and many times will prevent the need to undergo a more invasive procedure. A lesser-known form of alternative healing but becoming more popular is music therapy. In the late 18th century, scientists began to investigate the effects of music on the human body; however, using music as a healing medium dates back to ancient times. There are many forms and techniques of music therapy that aid a variety of disabilities having to do with communication, behavioral issues, the autism spectrum,…show more content…
A song or a piece of music has the power to transform an individual and take them not only to a different state of mind, but quite possibly a different consciousness. Making or singing music also has the power to transform an individual. “There is a resemblance of music in pitch, volume, rhythm, melody and structure to the natural human expression of emotion in voice, demeanor and behavior” (Ushedo, 2006, 1). Making music can create an environment where it indirectly teaches individuals communication and social skills through the emotions brought out by the music. The social interaction between individuals with behavioral problems has been aided by using musical activities. It can “encourage or motivate communication through musical activities, which are responsive to the child to promote eye contact, turn taking, sharing, joint attention” (Stephenson, 2006, 297). While creating a calmer and more relaxed environment with musical activities, behavioral problems can be aided through the use of this form of music therapy.
Music elicits an emotional and cognitive response in all who listen to it. It is powerful at the individual level because “it can induce multiple responses – physiological, movement, mood, emotional, cognitive, and behavioral” (Francis, 2008,
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