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What Is Music Therapy?

WHY MUSIC? Music influences human behavior by affecting the brain and other bodily structures in ways that are observable, identifiable, measurable, and predictable, thereby providing the necessary foundation for therapeutic applications.

HOW DOES MUSIC AFFECT THE BRAIN? The brain is the command center, where all our senses and experience come together to be processed and understood. The brain is dependent upon neurotransmitters to carry chemical messages throughout the body to function. Participating in music activity increases the levels of dopamine, which is necessary for learning through the development of new neuropathways. Research has also shown increased levels of endorphins, serotonin, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. Increased levels of oxytocin , 17-B-estradiol, testosterone, melatonin and immunoglobins have also been observed, and decreased cortisol. Music is the only sensory experience that can activate all areas of the brain simultaneously. This creates powerful new potentials for our clients. Pictured below is a person listening to music during an MRI Scan. With the newest understandings of neuroplasticity models for the development of new neuropathways in the brain, Music Therapy has become a core strategy used in leading rehabilitation, education and wellness programs.

WHAT IS MUSIC THERAPY? Music Therapy is an established health profession in which music is used within a therapeutic context to address physical, emotional, cognitive and social goals. Music Therapists use music for the enhancement of human capabilities through the planned use of musical interventions and techniques to affect specific behaviors and outcomes while working towards their client's goals. Music Therapists are trained in music, psychology, anatomy, and Music Therapy. They conduct assessments, create treatment plan goals, collect data and work individually or with treatment teams in a variety of settings. People of all ages and abilities can respond to music - you do not need a background in music to benefit from it. Music Therapy builds rapport, trust, and creates a safe space for treatment. This relationship assists and enhances co-treatment with other allied health professionals, particularly if the client is not responding to traditional therapies and treatment modalities.

WHY MUSIC THERAPY? Music Therapy triggers whole brain processes, directly affecting one's cognitive, social, emotional, and physical functions and abilities. Music Therapists are employed in hospitals (neonatal, NICU, oncology, pain management, hospice, palliative care, psychiatric, substance abuse, physical therapy) community mental health agencies, rehabilitation centers, day care facilities, nursing homes, schools and private practice. Music Therapists provide services for adults & children with psychiatric disorders, cognitive & developmental disabilities, speech & hearing impairments, physical disabilities, and neurological impairments. True North Music values each therapeutic interaction with great respect, love, and care. At True North Music, we believe in the limitless power of the human spirit, using Music Therapy's incredible potential as a vehicle for transformative change.

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