Science Finds Listening to Live Music Can Be Just as Effective as Medicine

Listening to music is probably the most appreciated leisure activity among people of all ages. But beyond being a remarkable way to spend your free time, listening to music, especially live one, can have tremendous therapeutic effects.

First, let’s discuss the beneficial influence of music, whether it’s live or recorded, and then I am going to present a study from 1983 conducted by the University of Oxford regarding how people suffering from cancer, Parkinson’s and other diseases noticed improvements due to music therapy .


A wide range of studies suggest that music can have a very powerful impact on one’s physical and mental health. Let’s go deeper into this topic.

Stress and anxiety reduction

The number of people suffering from anxiety is very high. Not to mention all the stress that the capitalist style of living involves. In order not to break down due to the overwhelming pressure, office workers need to spend time performing stress relieving activities. Studies indicate that listening to music as well as watching fish swimming around in an aquarium are probably the most effective relaxation techniques.

Another set of studies has proven that pain decreases in intensity and post-surgery recovery is speeded up when patients are exposed to music. Also, low to moderate anxiety as well as depression symptoms can be reduced dramatically after undergoing music therapy.

Blood pressure regulator

Unbalanced diet, sleep deprivation and working long hours are the worst enemy of the modern man. Cardiovascular diseases occur in most cases because of a chaotic way of living. Blood pressure spikes and heart rate issues are improved by listening to music. This claim is backed by thorough scientific research: the explanation is that your favorite singles make your body release endorphins, which affect the well-functioning of the circulatory system.

Solve sleep problems

Technology keeps us awake more than we should be. Plenty of cases of insomnia were reported among teens and college students. Poor sleep quality disturbs one’s ability to focus and is linked to reduced cognitive performance. An alternative to those expensive and harmful sleeping meds is listening to music, audio books or basically anything that leads to tension release.

Get back in good spirits

When you feel down after a tough day at work, music is the best remedy.   A good song can make all the worries disappear in an instant. Musical intervention is known to produce a burst of excitement similar to that one experienced after chocolate intake or after sex.

Keep your brain healthy

Music and reading are alike. They both reduce the risks of developing diseases involving memory impairments such as Alzheimer’s. Creativity and mind sharpness are also boosted by music, which can help you advance on a professional level.

The study

A study conducted in 1983 published by the University of Oxford has proven the hypothesis that live music, compared to the recorded one, is able to change a patient’s mood as well as affecting his physical wellbeing.

The study focused on the assumption that patients can benefit more from listening to live music. Fifty cancer patients of different ages were involved in the study. Some of them had to listen to live music while the rest had to listen to music played by a device. The results were clear: live music is more beneficial.

However, many may claim that the results are not really convincing because of the fact that this particular issue is very subjective. Nowadays a lot of research is put into this matter, so music therapy at a large scale will definitely become reality. Until then, groups such as “The Sync Project” gather valuable, accurate information regarding music’s impact on physical functions.

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