Whether it is a physical condition or a psychological one, experts are finding that singing is an effective measure to alleviate stress, discomfort and pain for many patients. And as such is steadily being introduced into several applications for therapy.
When a person sings, he or she tends to be in a more relaxed state of mind. This is primarily evidenced in people who stutter who seem to lose the condition when they sing. A consistent pattern of breathing brought about by singing also seems to place people in a calmer condition.
Beside the physical advantages brought about by therapy that incorporates singing, psychological advantages are present as well. People with issues ranging from fear of being alone to being in a crowded area have made positive progress because of singing. It has helped them cope with their anxieties and keep them in check. Here are some specific examples of singing being incorporated into therapy situations.
Singing Troubles Away
One of the most documented effects connected with singing therapy is in the management of anger issues particularly with road rage. A study based on a survey of about 2,000 drivers cited that singing along to music playing on the car stereo put the respondents in a more relaxed state, which led to a lowered tendency to confront others.
The advantages of singing by oneself are found to increase when the experience is shared with others. Another survey (this time on church choir singers) found nearly 90% of the respondents saying that singing benefited them socially while 75% said the activity was emotionally rewarding. Almost 60% said because of the regular lung function, singing afforded them physical benefits.
Learning to speak by learning to sing
Autistic children experience severe inhibition to communicate and what passes for communicating are usually grunts, shrieks, and hums. It has been observed that autistic children exhibit heightened responses to musical impetus. Most children with autism resort to singing to themselves when they don't speak. And because of this, therapists have started to incorporate singing into activities that develop vocal communication.
Melodic songs with simple words and repeating phrases have been found to help build the child's language abilities. Significant developments in speech have been made by singing songs that are matched to the flow of a familiar response elicited from the child.