My Music Playlist and It's Therapeutic Effect


A year ago in August I was having the worst day mentally, I was in public and it just suddenly hit me; the shakiness in my hands, the uncontrollable instability in my legs, my heart beating so fast I thought it was going to explode out of my chest and I felt like I was trapped in a tiny box with no holes and I was gasping for air. Every noise, every person seemed to get louder and closer and my mind went into overload, people walking past looking at me whilst I had my head down wanting to scream the suffering away, to them it was just a teenage girl crying. To me I felt like I was going to die. It's a scary realisation how you think everyone knows you're having a panic attack when in reality they don't. The whole point of me saying this is because the only that calmed me down was to put in my earphones and listen to breathin by Ariana Grande, who has always been an inspiration to me. It blocked the world out and I soon forgot about the passing people giving me stares. I started to breathe to the beat of the song and take in every word Ariana was telling me. I thought she was right there, personally guiding me through the attack and reminding me to do exactly what her song title is, breathe. It may sound silly to some people but the moral of this telling is to remind you that whatever it is that calms you down during a panic attack, do it. Whether you're like me and a certain song brings back the numbness feeling and the control you thought you lost for that split second, do it, just keep breathing.

So, I began to wonder about how particular situation has became a temporary solution to my panic attacks and a way to calm me down. I began researching the benefits music has and it's therapeutic effect and I found on the 'Mind' website that..

"Researchers found that music releases dopamine, the feel-good chemical in your brain. It also found that dopamine was up to 9% higher when volunteers listened to music that they enjoyed" 

I thought this statistic was really interesting so I continued to research Dopamine and how it links in with music. Dopamine is one of the brain's neurotransmitters and chemical that ferries information between neurons. It helps regulate movement, attention, learning, and emotional responses. An international team of researchers has found evidence of dopamine in the brain playing a role in the pleasure people feel when they listen to music. In the study, 27 volunteers were given either lovedopa which is a dopamine precursor that raises the levels of the neurotransmitter in the brain, or risperidone which has the opposite effect. The researchers found that those volunteers who received levodopa reported experiencing more pleasure while listening to music than did the placebo group. They suggest their findings indicate tat Dopamine plays a major role in the pleasure sensations that people experience from listening to music.

A Greek philosopher Plato once quoted "music gives wings to mind". Who's the ancient folk tune has developed to lyrics and melody has given life to each emotions of love, laughter, compassion, heroism, wrath, fear, disgust, wonder.

There are many studies that show how music therapy help people with mood disorders, in this one mentioned we can see that music therapy is effect through methods like group therapy. Music promotes healing and helps to ease the body and mind, influencing the physical and emotion health improving quality of life. Based on observations I have looked at, many medical experts have linked music with mental health and well-being. It was found that music is an effective therapy for pain, medicine for the heart, fasten post-stroke recovery, increases immunity, enhances learning and intelligence quotient, improves memory performance, as well as concentration.

As someone who suffers with depression and has done since 13, a psychological illness that causes lack of interest in life and activities that you usually enjoy. Depression can reach people of any age and it is becoming a major concern in our society. Different facts of the music must be considerably taken in recommended by Nilsson, that the type of music used should be between 60-80 beats per minute, non-lyrical and make up of mainly string ensemble. Music has got many different genes, therefore would have a different effect on individual's mood as people relate different to music they hear. Personally when I am sad I chuck on a Spotify playlist consisting of ballads and heartfelt songs, something that will definitely exacerbate my mood. So why do that? Everyone can admit to turning to melancholy music to make us feel better at some point in our lives, and actually it can trigger positive memories that can help to life our mood. An hypothesis from social psychology is that people like to listen to music that mirrors the tone of their current life circumstances, the songs act as a sort of tuning fork for our own situations, and they resonate with us. So it doesn't matter if you enjoy metal, pop or 50's music (like me!) whatever is your preference it will elevate your mood and aid relaxation because it's something you enjoy and you're taking yourself into consideration.
For me, classical music is a huge love of mine and I see it as a winner at helping you focus . Music that has a tempo of 60 bpm increases the efficiency of the brain in processing information. I play it all the time, either softly in the background whilst doing coursework or a situation when I need to calm. Also let's not forget about the social side of music, it can stop you from feeling lonely or isolated as one of the social aspects of music is going to concert, something I recently went to and can tell you firsthand how accurate this is. It connects people as everyone is there for the same reason you are. And lastly, I use music as a motivator when cleaning around the house or studying, I'll gladly stick on a Whitney or Spice girls song and I guarantee it's motivational force gets me straight up and I soon forget about what I'm doing and how absolutely boring it is. You can't go wrong with a bit Wannabe from the spices.

These are a few of my favourite songs I thoroughly enjoy to wind down and relax.

- breathin by Ariana Grande

- Alive by Sia

- You Say by Lauren Daigle

- Scars To Your Beautiful by Alessia Cara

- Is That Alright? by Lady Gaga

- April In Paris by Doris Day

- Run To You by Lea Michelle 

- Speechless by Naomi Scott

- Love is Alive by Lea Michelle 

- Brave by Sara Bareilles 

- How Far I’ll Go by Auli’i Cravalho 

- Give Me Love by Ed Sheeran

- Better Place by Rachel Platten 

- Stand By You by Rachel Platten 

- Don’t Be so Hard on Yourself by Jess Glynne

- This Is Me by Keala Settle 

- Que Sera, Sera by Doris Day 

- Dream a Little Dream of Me by Doris Day

- 2 become 1 by Spice Girls 

- I’m Fine by Jasmine Bade 

- Recovery by James Arthur 

- Rise Up by Andra Day 

- Get Well Soon by Ariana Grande


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