Definition and Quotes about Music Therapy
People often know about music as an artistic means of communications and emotional expression, but not many people know about music as a way to cure people’s mental problems. You might have heard about the benefits of music in clinical uses, but they are just brief introductions. Music therapy is something you need to dig deeper into so as to see music as a better thing that is used to enhance the mental strength of a human.
In this article, we will show you the definition of music therapy and how it is used in clinical cases. In addition, some most asked questions would be answered as well to give you the best knowledge about misunderstanding facts of this confusing and newly appeared music usage.
What Is Music Therapy?
There are many definitions about music therapy, but we should firstly concentrate on the way music is used to change people’s lives. Music therapy is a professional method in which music is used to address the factors of an individual within a therapeutic relationship. The relationship can be physical, cognitive, social needs or sometimes emotional conditions of a person. The client has to be assessed carefully so as to estimate the quality of therapy music being used. The music and related sources must be used and controlled by a professional in using music therapy. This therapist will decide the ways the client contact with the sounds. The treatment includes singing, listening, moving to or creating music. The lives of the clients will be improved through those musical involvements since they will take strong effect to the mental and behavior of them thus strengthen their abilities and help them to get rid of negative emotions or feelings. Sometimes people use music therapy as an effective method to help people who are struggling to express their thoughts and ideas so that they can feel easier to talk and express their minds.
There are some researchers about music therapies about their true effectiveness to clients. The results show that there are many different parts of mental and physical conditions of our body need to be provoked with the effect of music and other types of sound. For example, patients who are using music therapies can recover quickly from breakdowns as well as physical disabilities. Moreover, music therapy helps people to get a huge amount of motivation to engage in treatment. The advantages of music therapy still remain not fully discovered.
Misunderstanding Facts about Music Therapy
Since this is a new field of a study recently, not many people have a deep and correct understanding of music therapy and its features even professionals. The most well – known association working on this is the AMTA from the USA. This association specializes in supporting and researching music therapy applications and studies so as not to waste any efforts in finding new methods of using music to make our lives better. People often think that using music is good all the time, but if we don’t use them correctly with a high level of the profession, it would be useless. That’s the reason why music therapy should mainly be used under the form of clinical therapy which is the only professional discipline. Using music therapy can motivate and energize health treatment and other goals when applying on patients.
Below are some facts that people often mislead when talking about music therapy and the therapists:
- Not anyone can be music therapist just by playing some songs in the right time. One has to be recognized by AMTA with a bachelor’s degree or higher majoring in music therapy. The attendance in one of AMTA’s colleges and universities plus more than 1200 hours of clinical training are included and mandatory.
- To be a music therapist, one must hold the MT – BC credential. In some cases, license for being a music therapist is required to protect the public.
- Music therapy must be built based on the researchers with strong evidence and health profession. It means there would be no mistake or time skipping during the treatment. Everything must be done slowly and carefully.
- Music therapist has to achieve a degree of AMTA which means he or she has to be equipped with the knowledge in another related field of studies such as medicine, music, and psychology.
In some cases, people think some actions below are music therapy, but they are just some small usage of music in daily life without a medical and scientific profession. For example:
- A patient listens to his favorite songs from an iPod.
- Amateur groups of musicians such as Bedside Musicians, Sound Healers… They might sound great but they are not music therapists.
- Performances of celebrities at hospitals.
- Song performers with no clinical intention at the hospital.
On the other hand, these are truly called music therapies that are often applied by professional music therapists:
- Work to regain Congresswoman Giffords to recover her speech and improve her mental health after surviving a bullet wound to her brain.
- Lessen the negative effects of dementia by working with elders.
- Reduce the pain by using music in hospital.
- Improve communication capabilities of children who suffer from autism.
- Enhance the physical and mental condition of infants to ensure their settlement and maintain health.
So you’ve seen some basic knowledge about music therapy and how to distinguish a music therapist with a normal person who wants to bring joy to people at the hospital by using music. The main difference is the way they use music. Therapists are people who are well trained to collect information and turn them into the correct kind of music so as to make the treatments become better. That’s the reason why music therapies are now developing and becoming an important part of medical treatment.
The mission of AMTA is to make this type of medical treatment become widely spread and increase the number and the quality of music therapy services. It’s such a task of a challenge since there are still not so many professional associations worldwide can do these things like AMTA.