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Turn Up the Volume and Lower Your Stress

By Sandy Schroeder

If I am having a bad day, the sounds of my favorite guitar music always make things better. You may achieve the same relief with your favorites.

Emily Waters explains in psychcentral.com why music works so well to soothe us as we tap into its healing powers. Here are a few of the benefits.

If you have chronic pain - Music can boost your endorphins to ease the pain. Researchers studied the effect of music on fibromyalgia patients and found that even a small amount of music triggered a reduction in pain. There was less pain, depression and anxiety.

If you need a mental boost - Music may help. Research shows background music can help older adults do better with tasks that require thought. Upbeat music increased performance speed and downbeat music stimulated memory.

If you want to curb your appetite - Music may slow things down. Studies indicated people who ate in restaurants with dim lighting and soft music ate less food than those in other more noisy, brightly lit restaurants. In the more relaxed setting, people probably ate more slowly and felt full sooner.

If you have trouble sleeping - Music may mellow you out. Research has shown relaxing with classical music can be a simple, safe way to get more rest.

If you need a boost - Music can do that, too. Research shows music can stimulate and create a variety of moods. It can help people become more reflective and self-aware, too.

If you are depressed - Music can help reduce symptoms. A study in the World Journal of Psychiatry found patients suffering from stroke, dementia and Parkinson’s disease experienced a reduction in depression and anxiety with no negative side effects.

If you want to improve your exercise routine - Music can help. Most people find they can stay on a treadmill longer if they listen to their favorite tunes. Research says music lowers a person’s awareness of effort. As the music holds attention, you are less likely to notice the signs of exertion, such as muscle fatigue, sweating or respiration.

All of these benefits will probably lead to more studies and more uses of music to reduce pain and facilitate all sorts of activities. If this appeals to you, you might consider how you could use music at home and at work. Soft music might help to slow your kids down in the evening as it creates a more relaxed bedtime atmosphere. At work you might use your favorite music as background for creative sessions. Keep looking for ways to make it work for you.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in San Antonio, Tex.

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