Music is something that we all relate to. While some people “enjoy” music more than others, we all have our own connection to the ancient art of music. There are scientific reasons to why we love music so much: Studies have shown that when we listen to music, our brains release dopamine, which in turn makes us happy. In one study published 1 in Nature Neuroscience, led by Zatorre (Robert Zatorre, a neuroscientist), researchers found that dopamine release is strongest when a piece of music reaches an emotional peak and the listener feels “chills”— the spine-tingling sensation of excitement and awe. Music is innate to us, it is in our nature to love it. There is also evidence that music reminds us of our mothers heartbeat while we were in the womb, but this evidence is not confirmed by the scientific community. All in all, music is a big part of our lives— how do we benefit from it?
Here’s a great list on how we benefit from music:
- It elevates our mood. Music, as we saw in the paragraph above, boosts our brain’s production of dopamine— putting us in a better mood. This release of dopamine relieves feelings of anxiety and depression.
- It stimulates memories. This, hopefully (because of how awesome it is), stucks an accord with some of you. Have you ever listened to a song and immediately thought of something from the past, good or bad? Music does this to you and that comes with great benefits. Listening to a specific song can improve your mood by bringing you to a pleasant memory.
- It increases workout endurance. If you workout at the gym or go on runs, you know what I'm talking about. Studies have shown that listening to higher beats per minute (BPM) tracks while running can actually increase your running pace. If you want one more rep on the bench press next time you go workout, try putting a very high BPM song and see where it takes you.
- It reduces stress. Research has found that listening to music can relieve stress by triggering biochemical stress reducers. By reducing stress levels and providing a strong competing stimulus to the pain signals that enter the brain, music therapy can assist in pain management.
- Music is meaningful. People relate to the same things differently, and music is no exception. Different lyrics can have different meanings for people and that’s a beauty in itself. Whenever you listen to music, you can fully relate to it and feel as though the song was written just for you.
- It helps us sleep. Music can indeed help you fall asleep faster! We made a playlist just for that! Try it here on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5BimVZzC1LuuLi7mBqTtwm?si=a54e3a9d733b461c