I love looking at a variety of ways that health and healing can be delivered. I was thinking about music and music therapy the other day as a great way to help individuals cope with trauma.
Generally, trauma is seen from the individual as a form of disconnect; disconnection from peers, family members, God, or safety. Music therapy can give the space and the environment for safe communication and expression of thoughts and emotions in a way that does not necessarily require words. This can improve their social functioning, confidence, sense of empowerment, and emotional states. Sharing and expressing their feelings through music lowers their stress and anxiety levels.
Those affected by trauma can be in a lot of pain that they may or may not know how to express. Conventional therapy may not always be effective in this case because the patient simply needs a different form of communication or expression. Licensed music therapists can use music, to engage the emotional centers in the brain that are unable to be reached using talk therapy. Emotionally connecting to others using music and having a whole new way of expressing oneself could be the perfect fit to release these deep scars of the past.
“Music Therapy In Response To Crisis and Trauma.” American Heart Journal 38.5 (1949): 800. American Heart Association, Inc. Web. <http://www.musictherapy.org/assets/1/7/MT_Crisis_2006.pdf>.
Erkkila, Jaakko. “What Is Music Therapy and How Does It Work.” What Is Music Therapy and How It Works. ITHP, n.d. Web. 25 July 2015. <http://ithp.org/articles/musictherapy.html>.