Does Music Have Positive Effects On The Mind?

1777 words - 7 pages

Does music have positive effects on the mind? Few can deny that music isn’t powerful but whether or not it’s positive is a different matter. It becomes a common factor between people where just a single phrase can turn a crowd into a single entity of spirit and cacophony. However, this power can do more harm than good in some circumstances, creating a stereotype for genres of music. At a Metallica Concert in Montreal a few years ago, the show was forced to stop as the singer was injured. The crowd flew into a agitation and started to riot by destroying chairs, fighting with each other, and flipping cars. The underlying question is, “Would this happen at a Frank Sinatra Concert?” (Sun Sentinel, 1999) To further this stereotype, Darragh McManus stated that those that listen to Rap have a higher percent of breaking the law and are more prone to doing more damage than good while at the other end of the spectrum, those that listen to classical music tend to have higher incomes and are usually well-educated. (McManus, 2013) Even with these few stereotypes, the predominant factor of music’s effect on the brain is positive with multiple successful uses of music therapy with those who have disorders and of those that listen and perform music.

Music gives color to a black and white world while spinning fantasies within the minds of all that hear it. Dr. Steven Moffic, a psychiatry professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin, states that music incites emotions with us dating back to when mothers sang to soothe their children into slumber or away from pain. He also makes note of a trial conducted at Alzarha University in Iran with their depressed patients. Those that listened to Beethoven’s 3rd and 5th sonata saw a decrease in their mental states. In Venezuela, a similar test was done by allowing the 500,000 poor youth’s listen to classical music and since then, gang activity has decreased while the self-esteem of the children has shot upwards. (Moffic 62) The effect music can have on the mind is astonishing but some question the aspect and process of music therapy even with multiple accounts of successful tests.

A study of autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) revealed that those with ASD have difficulties in establishing and maintaining human contact for prolonged periods of time but with the introduction of music therapy, it can make the contacts much more pleasurable and can help establish relationships between performers. (Dimitriadis, Theo, Henk, Smeijesters 108-122) A girl named Sharon, who was born with ASD, attended sessions with a woman named Helen M for music therapy. Sharon arrived kicking and screaming, showing no desire to play with the instruments in the room. However, the moment Helen began to play the piano while bellowing Sharon’s name in her song, the girl calmed down and instantly joined in. According to her parents, Sharon refused to associate with others, keeping to herself just like the study done by...

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