Wellness experts predict that sound healing and music therapy will play an increasingly important role in treating mental and physical disease, as well as contributing to overall well-being. In the words of Edgar Cayce, known as the father of holistic medicine, “Sound will be the medicine of the future.”
The basic principle of sound healing is that all matter is energy which is eternal and in a constant state of vibration, or resonance. This vibration is the basic foundation for all existence. Music has been used as a tool of healing since ancient times. References have appeared in the writings of Greek philosophers. Native Americans and other indigenous groups have used music to enhance traditional healing practices for centuries. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practitioners have used music for healing. In Hindu rituals, Mantras with Sanskrit sounds are used to balance the chakras and heighten consciousness.
Some scholars believe that “modern” music therapy began in the mid-1700s when Louis Roger wrote his “A Treatise on the Effects of Music on the Human Body.” Others say that the modern discipline of music therapy began early in the 20th Century to treat recovering soldiers during and after both World Wars. Patients’ responses led to growth of such programs and wider scientific curiosity about the possible clinical effects of music.
The Natural Resonance Center believes that music can alter our physiology:
“Soothing music can produce a response characteristic of relaxation in which autonomic, immune, endocrine and neuropeptide systems are altered. Likewise, it produces desired psychological responses such as reductions in anxiety and fear. Some responses have been linked to effects on the hemispheric functioning of the brain and the limbic system. High psychophysiological stress levels inhibit or block learning. Thus, music can be the catalyst to facilitate mental suggestion, and enhance our own learning ability and self-healing capacities.” –Natural Resonance Center
WHAT DOES SOUND THERAPY TREAT?
- Sleep Disorders: According to Sound Therapy International, sound therapy “cuts mind chatter and allows the mind to move naturally into the slower rhythms that lead to sleep.”
- Depression:Sound is believed to enable the brain to produce more neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin, which are responsible for making people happier.
- Anxiety:Sound therapy can help you alleviate anxiety by re‐training your brain to relax, cooling down your “fight‐or‐flight response” and nurturing your “relaxation response.”
- Stress Management:Sound therapy can help reduce the physiological effects of stress. Sound therapy calms the nervous centers and balances neurochemicals in the brain.
- Pain and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD): According to studies, music triggers the brain to “release chemicals to distract the body and mind from pain. Sound therapy is often used for chronic pains and migraines, as well as more serious illnesses like cancer.