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The Demon Tattler

The student news site of Santa Fe High School

The Demon Tattler

The student news site of Santa Fe High School

The Demon Tattler

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Music Heals the Soul … Here’s the Science to Prove It!

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Listening to music is one of the main ways teens cope with hardships – so many choose to plug in their AirPods and blast their tunes when they want to distract their minds from whatever stress, anxiety, or trauma they are grappling with. 

It is often said that music “heals the soul.” Well, it turns out that science might be able to support this claim and prove that music can play a powerful role in teens’ mental health. 

An article that appeared in Princeton House Behavioral Health Today, from the University of Pennsylvania, breaks down how music can be formative and beneficial to teens in more than one way. In the article, board-certified music therapist Andy Freedman said that along with helping adolescents discover their identity, listening to music can also “create a healing environment during a time of uncertainty.”

Music helps with coping and healing due to its soothing sounds and beats, which regulate emotions and show what triggers a person.

Music therapy is an emerging practice that helps people cope or heal with personal struggles. According to the Camber Children’s Mental Health organization, music offers different ways for children to express feelings and talk about difficult topics in their lives. The mental health clinic gives children the opportunity to use instruments and record music so they can channel their emotions and express themselves artistically. 

According to Newport Academy, in the article “The Healing Power of Music Therapy for Teens,” music therapy is used to open avenues for communication that transcend the limitations of verbal expression. Music therapy is impactful and effective for teen therapy because it balances emotions while also revealing deep-down emotions that aren’t usually expressed. 

The benefits of music therapy include lifting a person’s self-esteem, positive changes in mood and emotional state, expressing oneself verbally and non-verbally, interacting with others, improved self-image, increase in motivation, decrease in anxiety, and more. The point is, music can positively impact a teen’s life for the better. 

Teens don’t necessarily need to go to a clinic to do music therapy. Teens can listen to music on their own at home, school, or anywhere. Listening to music can change one’s mood. It’s easier than ever to take out a phone and play music to lighten a mood. 

Many musical artists today say they used music as a form of therapy and later turned it into a successful career, such as Peso Pluma. In an interview with Billboard, Plima says that as a kid he would write his emotions down because it was like therapy for him. He would write down what he was feeling, and as he kept doing it, he realized his writing rhymed, so he later turned them into songs and got better with time. 

Adele, Billie Elish, Michael Jackson, Ed Sheeran, Zayne, Selena Gomez – the list goes on – used music to get through personal struggles and created songs that also helped the world with their hardships. 

The BBC article “7 stars reveal how songwriting and music helped their mental health” reveals that for Ed Sheeran, every time he’s been low and down, he’s always turned to songwriting to feel better. Zayne, from One Direction, shared that songwriting is a therapy process for his anxiety, a positive way to relieve stressful times from his past. 

Adele shared that while going through a heavy break-up, one song she wrote in particular, “Send My Love (To Your New Lover)”, got her through it and gave her confidence to tell her ex she was “over it.” Selena Gomez shared that she’s dealt with heartbreak and health issues, and to get through them she wrote songs that could also relate to other people’s struggling lives. 

Entertainment shows such as The Voice and American Idol are places where many people tell their stories through songs. Many have struggled and felt like there was nothing for them, but music was their guide out of the hole. 

According to Nicea DeGering writing for a Utah website, 20-year-old Kaibrienne Richins struggled with a painful thyroid disease that causes severe mood swings. There were nights when she felt like she wanted to end the pain, but she pushed through it. Music was her outlet, and it saved her. In a YouTube video showing her American Idol performance, Kaibrienne’s father shared that to lighten up Kaibrienne’s mood when she was down, he took her out of the house for rides and had her sing in the car. 

Many people on The Voice and American Idol have said that they’ve gone through domestic abuse, depression, addiction, diseases, conditions such as blindness, loss, etc., and that music was what helped them cope and heal. 

Music is a great way to cope and heal personal struggles. Rather than turn to drugs and negative habits, teens can just sing, learn to play an instrument, and immerse themselves in music.

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