How Music Affects Your Brain

Science behind Music 13 July 2014 | Comments Off on How Music Affects Your Brain

How Music Affects Your BrainMusic has been known to bind people across borders, race, nationality, culture or color. A tool for expressing and communicating emotions and feelings, or a message, music is not bound by the technicalities like language. For most people music is a way of relaxing, just being, be it listening to your favorite tracks, or composing and making music. A lot many times, music, irrespective of the unit it is being played on, tends to overwhelm. But why does no other sense make us feel the way music does? Music in films, or concerts, or sometimes even at the restaurant you’re dining at can make you feel like you’re in a different world.

Music is different for everyone. The understanding of music is different from person to person. Something that may be noise for some may be music for others, while some may find opera boring. Music is a perceptual illusion, the understanding and comprehension of which is based on the individual ability of each person to process the structure of the musical piece. A piece of music is a complex blend of different sounds and sequences, and each person’s brain comprehends it differently.

Besides, there are specific benefits of listening to music:

  1. Improves creativity: listening to music when working or trying to finish trying tasks can help in finishing it faster. Moderately loud music, not too loud, can actually help in boosting creativity and thinking of smarter solutions. Music that plays as a part of the ambience brings out the most creativity.
  1. Predicting personality with music:A study conducted by the Heriot Watt University actually broke down specific character traits of people listening to different genres of music. For instance:
  • Jazz fans are creative, easy going, outgoing and have a high self-esteem.
  • Blues fans are outgaining, easy going, creative, and gentle besides having high self-esteem
  • Opera lovers are gentle, creative, and have high self-esteem
  • Classical music fans are introverts, at ease, creative, and hold high self-esteem
  • Rappers and rap lovers are outgoing and hold high self- esteem

  1. Learning music improves reasoning and motor skills: Various researches show that adults, and esp. children, who have taken music training, have better vocabulary, motor skills, and non-verbal skills. Children with as less as 3 years of musical training have better auditory discrimination skills than their non-musically trained counterparts.
  1. Music for exercise: a lot of people who run or work out prefer to do so to a playlist of their favourite music or songs that they have chosen for the specific purpose. Gyms and training centres constantly play relevant music, which is music that motivates, invigorates and energizes. One famous study conducted in 1911 by Leonard Ayres noted that cyclists who listened to music when cycling pedalled faster, for longer, than cyclists who rode in silence.
  1. Classical music for increased visual attention: a study conducted on stroke patients noted that they responded way better and had notably improved visual attention spans when subjected to classical music. The results were not so favourable in the case of white noise, and were worst in the case of silence.

Comments are closed.