A dose of music in the life of depressed patients might work better on their condition, suggests study. Apart from traditional depression treatments like psychotherapy or medication, music too effects the mental health of a patient.
The study was carried on 421 people, who had already participated in nine short-term experiments, which tested the benefits of music therapy on the people.
The study found people felt less depressed when music was added to their treatment.
Music therapy also helped to ease anxiety and improve the functioning of depressed individuals and the therapy has been named as safe as the traditional ones.
Senior study author, Christian Gold of Uni Research Health in Bergen, Norway, said, “We can now be more confident that music therapy in fact improves patients’ symptoms and functioning, and that this finding holds across a variety of settings, countries, types of patients, and types of music therapy.”
Music therapy includes listening, actively playing an instrument or singing or participating in a musical performance, or a combination of all of these.
“We still think that more research is needed; however, we feel that research on music therapy for depression can now turn to more specific questions, such as comparing different types of therapy to each other”, Gold said.
The duration of the studies ranged from six to 12 hours, with minimum participants being 14 and maximum being 79.
Dr. Gjin Ndrepepa, a researcher at Technical University in Munich, Germany, said, “The most important finding is that music therapy shows short-term beneficial effects for people with depression when added on top of baseline psychological or pharmacological treatment.”
Modern brain imaging studies have shown that music therapy activates those regions of the brain which are not involved in regulating emotions. Joyful and sad music can have different effects.
Gold emphasized on the thought that more research is still needed.
“Until we have more specific research results comparing different music therapies to each other, music therapy should be seen as one of a variety of options. It is important to have choices because no therapy works for everyone,” he said.