Apr 3, 2024 | Mental Health

The Hidden Benefits of Music for Mental Health


There is a special feeling that comes with hearing your favourite song. Whether it is one you have been listening to for many years or a new top choice, the connection we feel to music is both mental and physical. There are multiple mental health benefits associated with music. So, pop on your headphones and get lost in the sound. 

Validates your mood 

Often, we need an emotional release, which allows us to process feelings and regulate our mood. Music has the incredible power to uplift and improve our emotional well-being. Listening to certain songs can encourage emotions such as joy, nostalgia, creativity, or calm. 

“The psychological effects of music can be powerful and wide-ranging. Music therapy is an intervention sometimes used to promote emotional health, help patients cope with stress, and boost psychological well-being.” 

Helps manage stress 

Listening to music helps reduce stress by triggering physiological responses including decreased heart rate, reduced blood pressure, and lower levels of stress hormones such as cortisol. When the body is exposed to excessive amounts of these hormones, it can cause increased states of stress. Ongoing strain can often lead to anxiety disorders, depression, and other mental health conditions. 

“A recent 2021 study showed that adults who listened to both personal and neutral selections of music, at home and in a laboratory environment, had significantly ‘reduced cortisol levels.’ This was found regardless of the music type.”

Psych Central 

Helps with emotional regulation 

Typically, we do not realize the impact songs can have on our bodies and minds. The limbic system, which helps processes emotions and memory, “lights up” when our ears hear music. Therefore, the emotions you have when you hear a particular song may be the result of dopamine, which triggers pleasure and feelings of well-being. Since music can serve as a medium for expression and regulation, it can help individuals process their emotions in a healthy way. This outlet can help release feelings such as sadness, anger, or anxiety. 

Connects us to others 

Sharing commonalities with others plays a vital role in our mental health. It is human nature to crave connection, and music can be a powerful unifier. Music can serve to facilitate social interaction and lead to a sense of belonging and community. Online fan groups, choirs, bands, or attending live music can create social bonds, leading to reduced feelings of isolation and loneliness. 

“Music plays a vital role in cultural identity, serving as a powerful force that unites people from diverse backgrounds. It has the ability to transcend language barriers and connect individuals through shared musical experiences.”

Couture Media 

With music available at our fingertips, it is something we can take with us everywhere we go! Whether it be the grocery store, enjoying the outdoors, or in our home, it can comfort us from wherever and whenever we need it most. So, turn up your favourite song, sit back, and enjoy the benefits it has to offer your mind and body! 

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