When you think of music therapy, what do you think of? Perhaps you think of a person sitting quietly on a park bench listening to their MP3 player. Or maybe you think of a sterile laboratory environment where a patient listens to different types of music and a technician or researcher uses electrodes to observe the patient’s physical changes. While both of these things are not out of the realm of possibility, they are neither of them exactly true.
Music therapy is much more serious a practice than just giving a patient an MP3 player and turning them loose in a park. But it isn’t as impersonal as many types of therapies performed in hospital-like conditions.
Music therapy is actually a way of using music to help a patient’s mental abilities by producing calm, concentration, and comprehension. The therapy is applied by a professional music therapist and can be done in a variety of settings – such as a hospital or a home – for almost any illness, physical or emotional.