What Music Can Do for Your Recovery?

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Whether you’re an academic or casual listener, a fan of pop, or love to get down to some country, music is one of the few things on earth where there’s truly something for everyone. Music scores our lives, forges memories and can reach us in ways no other entity on earth can. Who hasn’t belted out in song when their favorite tune came on the radio or lip sang with friends? Who doesn’t remember trying to recite the lyrics to a rap song with a friend, failing miserably and laughing all along? Such is the power of music.

There is a positive correlation between hearing music and our automatic emotional responses. According to research conducted by the Stanford University School of Medicine, people who listen to certain music see more vivid colors and experience a deeper connection to the moment, making it ideal for practicing mindfulness techniques and meditation.

White House Recovery and Detox Music Therapy

First and foremost, before diving into what music can do for you, we’re going to toot our own horn here and brag about how it’s one of the best forms of treatment we offer here at White House Recovery and Detox. Besides having one of the only state-of-the-art professional recording studios in-house, we provide a specialized music therapy program. We believe that music and art are universal ways to express yourself.

Sometimes it’s easier to communicate and relate through music and art than through words. So we equipped our facility with a professional music studio and professional camera equipment so the residents can document their experiences and express themselves musically. We even have a podcast on addiction recovery that will be airing soon!

Below are a few of the many benefits of using music therapy to improve your psychological and physical health:

  • Achieve mild pain relief
  • Improve mood and decrease the symptoms of various mental health conditions like anxiety and depression
  • Assist with movement in physical rehabilitation
  • Promote calmness and help with sleep disorders like insomnia
  • Decrease muscle tension, blood pressure, and stress
  • Provide an excellent emotional focal point and improve emotional control

 Mitigates Your Daily Stresses

The stresses of everyday life can get to anyone, whether your daily obstacles are middle school bullies or you’re suffering from substance misuse. When you’re in treatment, however — and especially if you’re in transition between inpatient and outpatient programs — the stresses come at a higher cost: relapse.

High-risk situations can be a common trigger for a relapse. These occurrences can happen every day and can range from something as common as an argument with a spouse to natural disasters and financial woes. During these times, unpleasant emotions such as loneliness, isolation, depression, or anxiety may stir up and cause you to feel as if there’s no hope without drugs or alcohol.

While your temperament may be fragile, this condition does not have to rule your life. With coping skills, clients increase their self-efficacy and lower the risk of relapse in the months following treatment.

What better way to cope than music? According to some studies, music listening impacted the psychobiological stress system. Here are activities where music releases stress:

  • While driving, music can help you avoid road rage.
  • Soothing music help while eating by triggering the relaxation response, lowering cortisol levels, and making it easier to digest food.
  • Before starting your day because getting out the bed is the hardest part of the day for some; putting on music helps alleviate these stresses.

 Makes Working Out Easier

It’s no secret — working out does wonders for patients suffering from substance use disorders. A 2015 paper from The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse reported that “research conducted suggests that exercise may be an effective adjunctive treatment for SUDs.” In addition, “individuals with SUDs face elevated risks of multiple comorbid mental and physical health problems,” which means you will gain more significant benefits from physical activities.

If you’re reading this and you’re not an athlete or even if you hate working out, this may not sound appealing, but that’s where music comes in.

A 2011 Harvard Medical School article looked into the deep and complex connection between music and the human body and found that songs with energetic beats at higher speeds can enhance your physical strength and endurance when working out, while meditative music can lower your blood pressure and decrease stress levels. That’s right — music in your ears during a workout is the equivalent of a can of spinach to an angry Popeye.

Listening to certain kinds of music can also cause automatic positive changes throughout your nervous system, depending on your personal preferences. Researchers have found that the volume, tempo, genre, language, and tone of a song all inform its emotional or physical effect on a listener.

Since childhood, music has been comforting to many and has been a place of refuge in ways you might have previously never thought of. At White House Recovery and Detox, we’ve realized that and, with experts and trained clinicians, honed in on how to bottle up the best properties of music to treat our clients. Located in the beautiful foothills outside of Los Angeles, California, we would love nothing more for you than to check out our specialized music therapy. We believe that music and art are a universal way to express oneself when the words just aren’t there. Come find out how your sleeping, earing, stress, and overall recovery process can improve through music, and call us at (800) 510-5393. While we believe in tough love, we also believe in holistic approaches and want you to reach your recovery goals in as healthy a way as possible. We’re here for you.