Sound Therapy- You know what they say, “Music is for the soul”. Indeed it is, thanks to sound therapies that have proven the saying to be true.
With all the stress in virtually all spheres of life, scientists have discovered the wondrous amazement of a certain kind of soothing sounds that can calm our nerves. They found that slower tunes help reduce stress and anxiety.
As far as sound therapy goes, the mind and body find relaxation with slow rhythmic songs/sounds. It could be a music piece or a special composition of natural sounds designed for the purpose of sound therapy.
While fast songs can increase concentration and alertness, the effect cannot be compared to the result from slow songs.
Substantiating the therapeutic gospel of songs, Monash University conducted a study to discover that slower classical music could help reduce “anxiety, heart rate, and blood pressure”.
Stress takes a toll on the brain and the body. Over a long period of time and unattended to, it can harm our health.
Chronic stress increases the stress hormone cortisol and affects many brain functions. The result of this is mood swings, forgetfuness and other mental issues.
When the brain is stressed and tensed, it signals the adrenal glands through the spinal cord to release adrenaline. This process then triggers an increase in the blood sugar level, increases heart rate and blood pressure. Stress also causes the brain to influence the production of the stress hormone, cortisol.
Excess cortisol can equally lead to a host of physical health problems like weight gain, osteoporosis, irritability, restlessness, fatigue, digestive problems, hormone imbalances, cancer, tension headaches and migraines, heart diseases, and diabetes.
Simply put, the nervous system instructs our bodies to release stress hormones including adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol, under pressure.
Stress can break down one’s immunity.
So, to combat this health threat which is increasingly the reality of millions of people around the world; sound therapy is advocated as a natural way of calming our nerves and brains.
Cognitive scientists and researchers in music therapy, say slower musical beats(rhythms) have the power to alter brainwave speed, thereby inducing a state that’s more meditative or hypnotic.
According to them this is perhaps why so many cultures and religious services make slower, ceremonial music a big part of important rituals. Same with some exercise patterns like yoga.
Sound healing enthusiasts say that listening to percussive instruments like gongs, Tibetan singing bowls, and tuning forks reduces stress and can place the listener in a meditative state.
Many sound therapist have identified some powerful slow songs like Someone Like You by Adele, Watermark by Enya, and Weightless by Marconi Union.
Weightless by Marconi Union has been particularly praised by sound therapist. The piece was put together in collaboration with sound therapists.
It has carefully arranged harmonies, rhythms, and bass lines that helps to slow down a listener’s heart rate, reduce blood pressure and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.