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[Guardian] Music improves wellbeing and quality of life, research suggests

Maiden Voyage

Gold™ Member

A review of 26 studies finds benefits of music on mental health are similar to those of exercise and weight loss​


“Music,” wrote the late neurologist Oliver Sacks, “has a unique power to express inner states or feelings. Music can pierce the heart directly; it needs no mediation.”

A new analysis has empirically confirmed something that rings true for many music lovers – that singing, playing or listening to music can improve wellbeing and quality of life.

A review of 26 studies conducted across several countries including Australia, the UK and the US has found that music may provide a clinically significant boost to mental health.

Seven of the studies involved music therapy, 10 looked at the effect of listening to music, eight examined singing and one studied the effect of gospel music.

The analysis, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Network Open, confirmed “music interventions are linked to meaningful improvements in wellbeing”, as measured quantitatively via standardised quality-of-life survey data.

The effects were similar whether participants sang, played or listened to music.

The authors of the meta-analysis suggest that the benefit of music to mental quality of life was close in effect to improvements in mental health due to exercise and weight loss.

“Future research is needed to clarify optimal music interventions and doses for use in specific clinical and public health scenarios,” the authors said, emphasising that there was “substantial individual variation in responses to music interventions” across the studies analysed.

“Many of us know from personal experience how profound a music intervention can be at times that include surgery, ill-health or mental health episodes,” said Kim Cunio, an associate professor and convener of musicology at the Australian National University, who was not involved in the research.

“This study makes the connection between our personal experiences and a growing body of data of peer-reviewed research that makes the case for music as a frontline intervention in our health system.

“All of us are experts in music because we’ve spent thousands of hours listening to music, codifying it in our brain and responding to it. Is it any wonder what when we listen to music, something remarkable happens?

“When I’m feeling that things are a little bit hard, I turn to music like we all do. Sometimes that music is a deliberate echo of how I’m feeling … sombre and sad. But sometimes I need music of a completely different feeling that can snap me out of that space.

“This is the true wonder of music – that there is no rule as to what is best to listen to. We have to follow the heart.”



Direct link to the initial meta-analysis:

Key Points
Question Are music-making and listening interventions associated with positive changes in health-related quality of life?

Findings This systematic review and meta-analysis of 26 studies comprising 779 individuals found that music interventions were associated with statistically and clinically significant changes in mental HRQOL, both preintervention to postintervention as well as when music interventions were added to treatment as usual vs treatment as usual control groups.

Meaning These results suggest that associations between music interventions and clinically significant changes in HRQOL are demonstrable in comprehensive reviews of previous studies.

Abstract
Importance Increasing evidence supports the ability of music to broadly promote well-being and health-related quality of life (HRQOL). However, the magnitude of music’s positive association with HRQOL is still unclear, particularly relative to established interventions, limiting inclusion of music interventions in health policy and care.

Objective To synthesize results of studies investigating outcomes of music interventions in terms of HRQOL, as assessed by the 36- and 12-Item Health Survey Short Forms (SF-36 and SF-12).

Data Sources MEDLINE, Embase, Web of Science, PsycINFO, ClinicalTrials.gov, and International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (searched July 30, 2021, with no restrictions).

Study Selection Inclusion criteria were randomized and single-group studies of music interventions reporting SF-36 data at time points before and after the intervention. Observational studies were excluded. Studies were reviewed independently by 2 authors.

Data Extraction and Synthesis Data were independently extracted and appraised using GRADE criteria (Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluations) by multiple authors. Inverse-variance random-effects meta-analyses quantified changes in SF-36 mental and physical component summary (respectively, MCS and PCS) scores from preintervention to postintervention and vs common control groups.

Main Outcomes and Measures SF-36 or SF-12 MCS and PCS scores, defined a priori.

Results Analyses included 779 participants from 26 studies (mean [SD] age, 60 [11] years). Music interventions (music listening, 10 studies; music therapy, 7 studies; singing, 8 studies; gospel music, 1 study) were associated with significant improvements in MCS scores (total mean difference, 2.95 points; 95% CI, 1.39-4.51 points; P < .001) and PCS scores (total mean difference, 1.09 points; 95% CI, 0.15-2.03 points; P = .02). In subgroup analysis (8 studies), the addition of music to standard treatment for a range of conditions was associated with significant improvements in MCS scores vs standard treatment alone (mean difference, 3.72 points; 95% CI, 0.40-7.05 points; P = .03). Effect sizes did not vary between music intervention types or doses; no evidence of small study or publication biases was present in any analysis. Mean difference in MCS scores met SF-36 minimum important difference thresholds (mean difference 3 or greater).

Conclusions and Relevance In this systematic review and meta-analysis, music interventions were associated with clinically meaningful improvements in HRQOL; however, substantial individual variation in intervention outcomes precluded conclusions regarding optimal music interventions and doses for distinct clinical and public health scenarios.
 

Maiden Voyage

Gold™ Member
beavis and butthead headbang GIF
 

kingfey

Banned
You dont need a research for that. A calm relaxing music, can make all your worries go away. Plus you have less chance of getting depression, if you listen to music. Your mind is fully occupied with the music.
 

Con-Z-epT

Gold Member
You dont need a research for that. A calm relaxing music, can make all your worries go away.
You don't even need calm or relaxing music. As long as you love it your mind can fully focus even on the most frantic or aggressive sound giving you a hypnotic and / or meditative state. What others would consider as unhearable gives me shivers, goosebumps and a tingling sensation in my brain.
 
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Sybrix

Member
Research funds and man hours well spent.

Breaking: 26 studies find water is wet.

Is Water Wet though?

Something with Water on it is deemed wet, does that mean water is wet?

'The apple is wet' - Because it has water on it.

The fact a liquid is on a solid means its wet but does that mean a liquid on its own is wet 24/7?

Is a fish wet 24/7?

I am not so sure.............
 

sircaw

Just a lil finicky

A review of 26 studies finds benefits of music on mental health are similar to those of exercise and weight loss​






Direct link to the initial meta-analysis:

Key Points
Question Are music-making and listening interventions associated with positive changes in health-related quality of life?

Findings This systematic review and meta-analysis of 26 studies comprising 779 individuals found that music interventions were associated with statistically and clinically significant changes in mental HRQOL, both preintervention to postintervention as well as when music interventions were added to treatment as usual vs treatment as usual control groups.

Meaning These results suggest that associations between music interventions and clinically significant changes in HRQOL are demonstrable in comprehensive reviews of previous studies.
It sure as hell Does

 
What does an intervention look like? They just play happy music?

I ask because I like melancholic music (mostly classical) and it doesn't really make me feel better, sometimes it even makes me feel worse. It stimulates my brain nicely, but the emotions aren't always good.
 

thefool

Member
Well...yeah.
Same with sex, watching good movies, working out, just being happy and cheerful in general. Eating something you really like. Petting dogs, etc. Obviously, we know exactly what stimulus are positive.

What is hard is the in-between.
 
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