From being a form of entertainment to be used during the religious ceremonies’ music has indeed become an essential part of our lives and most people actually can’t live without it. Music has many effects on our bodies: it can make you sad, it can change your mood, it can increase your productivity, it could give you the courage to try out something, and it can also motivate or encourage you when you are feeling pretty down. But why does music have such immense effects on our bodies? Neuroscientists have pondered over this question for decades but thanks to advancement in the field of music and neuroscience, this question has been answered via numerous quantitative researches in neuromusicology. It is now evident that music affects the brain in astounding ways and can actually activate every known part of the brain. Music touches people in different ways and listening to the right genre of music can make one smarter, happier, healthier and more productive. Below is how music affects our brain.
1. Music and emotions
Music has profound effects on emotions by stimulating brain cells through specific circuits. This is evident when a small child starts smiling and dancing to a rhythm meaning that the music is engaging their mood and emotion. The primary way in which music affects our mood and emotions is by stimulating the release of the “happy” hormone, dopamine which is responsible for the feel-good mood. Listening to smooth, relaxing music also stimulates the brain to release the hormone oxytocin which functions to increase trust in other individuals and also crucial for bonding between mother and child. Music lovers have been established to have high levels of oxytocin making them more generous and trustworthy.
2. Music and brain memory
There is sufficient evidence that music significantly improves memory especially songs that an individual used to listen before suffering memory loss due to certain medical conditions such as comma or Alzheimer’s disease. A research done by the University of California established that familiar songs trigger a part of the brain responsible for relating music and memory thereby reversing the effects of memory loss particularly in Alzheimer’s disease. Familiar music thus evokes specific emotional responses and retrieves meaningful memories from the past.
3. Music role in reversing the effects of brain damage
The brain has a mechanism of overturning the results of its damage by reorganizing its structure to form new neural connections(pathways) to function correctly. This process of self-regeneration is known as neuroplasticity and is enhanced by particular genres of music loved by the individual. This is because music provides a specific stimulus required to create these new pathways thereby enabling the brain to regenerate itself effectively and within a short time. A study conducted by the University of Newcastle in Australia where popular music was to initiate memory recovery in patients with severe brain injuries proved a success and supported the importance of music in neuroplasticity.
4. Music and attention
Music has been established to significantly increase one’s awareness in a particular task by mainly engaging the brain. A study conducted by Stanford University School of Medicine concluded that peak brain attention or activity occurred during the periods of silence in between musical rhythm. The anticipatory silence in between musical movement enables the brain to integrate with the heart thereby increasing one’s level of concentration in a particular task.
Music has been established to have profound effects on the brain with the most common effects being increasing productivity, improving moods, enhancing brain’s memory, heightening concentration level, lowering stress levels and intensifying the process of neuroplasticity during brain damage. Music also plays an essential role in developing young brains with children with musical backgrounds being established to perform better in school. Now that you have established the crucial role-played music in the brain, it may just be right to get online to MsMusic and book your favorite music artist(s) to perform live on your party, wedding, and event.