How Music Therapy May Heal Forces Personnel

In 2012, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Department of Defence in the US has launched a music therapy programme intended for wounded military personnel and their families. The programme features services that use music to promote various aspects of the patient’s health – physical, emotional, mental, social, aesthetic, and spiritual.

Can this help UK soldiers too?
Definitely, it can. Although music therapy is relatively new as compared to the numerous established treatments for military personnel who have had serious mental problems such as post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a growing body of research suggests that it can be an effective therapy as well.

Below are the three major benefits of music therapy:

It bridges the gap between rehabilitation and psychological health.
Research shows that music engages the brain across diffuse networks at multiple levels, from those that process emotions to the areas involved in higher-order thinking. When it comes to rehabilitation, music therapy is effective in providing communication, motor and cognitive support to the patient.

It is accessible to all.
Music therapy can be conducted to individuals, groups and families. Regardless of age and gender, anyone can reap the health benefits of music. Practitioners are trained to conduct one-on-one therapy sessions and group sessions which may involve the spouses, children and close peers of the patient.

Clinical studies support music therapy for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
Considered as the ‘signature wound’ of military personnel, TBI is a common condition that has serious, life-threatening effects to the patient. Clinical studies on the role of music therapy in the treatment of traumatic brain injury suggest that incorporating music to standard therapies results to improved self-image, enhanced communication skills and interpersonal relationships, better motor functioning, reduced anxiety and depressive symptoms, improved  group cohesiveness, and higher sense of self-expression and self-awareness.

What happens on a typical music therapy session?
Music therapy sessions vary, depending on the age, needs and attention span of the patient. Normally, the session involves singing, dancing, percussion improvisation, sing along with hand motions, and music listening task. Each of this activity has a healing purpose.

Take care and relax, and love your body. With 10% off the price for British Forces Members and Ex-Members, why not book in for a session?

Steve xx