Changing Consciousness and Treating Depression: How Music Affects the Human Brain

Music accompanies most people throughout their lives. It begins with a lullaby, then other rhythms and melodies appear, and finally musical preferences are formed. One song can lift your spirits, another can bring tears. Why does this happen and how to use the influence of music on our brain?

How Music Affects Our Brains

Music is information with an emotional coloring. It can cause a person’s feelings, laid down by the author of the composition. For example, a favorite song leads to the release of dopamine in the body. The effects of this hormone is clear consciousness, maximum concentration, setting the brain to create masterpieces, and high motivation. At the same time, from the point of view of emotions, it doesn’t matter whether a person listens to a piece of music or performs it. Music is born in the brain.

High brain activity is observed in musicians who play notes from the sheet, as this is one of the most complex activities.

An interesting study of musicians and non-musicians was conducted by a team from the American Society for Neuroscience. The results are published in the Journal of Neuroscience. Scientists compared the brains of 153 people: professional musicians and ordinary people. It turned out that long-term training in music made lasting changes in large-scale brain networks. For example, musicians have stronger connections in the white matter (between auditory areas and lobes involved in different types of high-level processing).

It’s no coincidence that in imperial and noble families, musical education was compulsory. Music develops mathematical and spatial thinking, playing instruments trains fine motor skills, reading sheet music facilitates the instant translation of complex notes into physical action.

How a Person’s Character Is Related to Their Musical Preferences

Scientists have found that there is a direct link between a person’s character and their musical preferences.

For example, fans of blues and jazz are outgoing and creative but are prone to anxiety and arrogance. Reggae is also loved by creative and sociable people, and prone to laziness. Country fans are most often hard-working and easy-going, but they have a higher tendency to suicide. Metalists and rockers are calm and mentally adequate people, but with low self-esteem.

However, musical preferences can change as a person develops: with age, changes in social status, levels of education and erudition.

What Music Is Suitable for Work

Instrumental music helps you focus. Music without words promotes reading and allows you to delve deeper into the text. It creates a screen between the reader and the outside world, helping to abstract away extraneous sounds and fully focus on forming images in the imagination. Songs with words, on the contrary, scatter the attention of a person working with text or solving complex tasks.

If the work is monotonous and monotonous, but requires attention and accuracy, music, including music with lyrics, contributes to its more dynamic performance. Moreover, similar to reading 22bet predictions and tips, it relieves boredom, which increases productivity and satisfaction.

However, there are some people for whom any music interferes with their work. A possible reason for this is habits developed in childhood. If parents put a child to bed in complete silence, then as an adult, they can hardly fight sound disturbances when working. People who fell asleep to music or household noise as children find it easier to concentrate in different environments.

What Music to Choose for Exercise

Properly selected music can increase the effectiveness of training and make it more pleasant. It’s no coincidence that many athletes work out with headphones on to specially designed playlists.

Scientists noticed the correlation between sports performance and music more than 10 years ago. This psychological trick is based on three factors:

  • Music distracts from muscle pain and fatigue.
  • Favorite tunes stimulate the release of endorphins, which cause pleasant feelings and give strength.
  • Rhythmic tracks help increase the speed of movements, the brain perceives the expressive beat as a stimulant.

Analysis of gym audiences shows that men and women prefer to exercise to different tracks. Men more often choose heavy rock, and women picke something light.

When forming a sports playlist, I recommend choosing music for each stage: for the main workout — active and dynamic, for stretching — calm and relaxing.

Why Sad Music Is Necessary

The properties of music have found application in therapy, taking advantage of the fact that it carries a powerful charge of associations and impressions and can change the emotional state. However, it doesn’t work the same way as in sports.

Contrary to expectations, depressed patients are recommended to listen to sad music rather than happy music. Sad songs provide a sense of empathy, helping recovery, while positive songs can worsen the patient’s condition.

Sad music helps to cope with a bad mood as it allows you to immerse yourself in memories. The technique works similarly to classical psychology techniques related to living emotions.

What Classical Music Is Useful

Music therapy is used not only for depression. Thus, it has a positive effect on memory and attention of people who have suffered a stroke, as well as those who face increased mental stress. And the best result is given by classical music.

Separate scientific research was honored by the work of Mozart. It turned out that his music affects people in a special way. Usually, listening to different songs activates different parts of the brain. However, the music of the Viennese classicist affects almost the entire cortex. The Mozart effect has not yet been scientifically explained.