© Borgis - New Medicine 4/2010, s. 171-172
*Ewa Ogłodek, Aleksander Araszkiewicz
Music therapy and kinesiotherapy in medicine
Chair and Clinic of Psychiatry of the Nicolaus Copernicus University,
Collegium Medicum in Bydgoszcz, Poland
Head of Department: prof. Aleksander Araszkiewicz, MD, PhD
Music therapy is a promising approach widening the potential applications of psychotherapy. Music influences both psychological and physiological parameters. Music therapists primarily help people improve their observable level of functioning and self-reported quality of life in various domains (e.g., cognitive functioning, motor skills, emotional and affective development, behaviour and social skills) by using music experiences (e.g., singing, song writing, listening to and discussing music, moving to music) to achieve measurable treatment goals and objectives. Dr. Paul Dennison is an internationally known educator and authority on cognitive skills and reading achievement. A pioneer in the field of applied neuroscience, Dr. Dennison has conducted years of research at his learning centres into reading achievement and its relation to brain development. He has developed the movement-based learning known today as Educational Kinesiology. Educational Kinesiology combines intentional movement and the body?s natural intelligence to enable stress-free learning. People who use it have obtained benefit in reading, writing, mathematics, co-ordination, organisation, communication, focus and attention. The authors carried out research on the influence of music on the process of patients? rehabilitation. Introduction of music therapy and kinesiotherapy to the process of motor and psychological rehabilitation of patients makes the process more efficient and fosters quicker recovery.
The impact of various domains of art, including music, on the human psyche has been examined many times and for a very long time. Aboriginal people used music as a therapeutic measure. During ritual, religious ceremonies it was a means of releasing emotions ? ecstasy, crying, trance ? and was purifying to the psyche. In addition, people believed that it freed them from somatic diseases. The first references to the influence of music on the human body date back to the 5th century BC, to Pythagoras, who believed that external harmony expressed through music affected the creation of internal harmony of a person and shaped his or her moral attitude. Democritus pointed out the significant role of pleasure in aesthetic experiences. In addition, Plato and Socrates emphasized educational aspects of music, believing that music aroused various moral feelings ? positive and negative. In the 17th century in Italy was written the first dissertation discussing therapeutic properties of music for certain afflictions, such as podagra, subfebrile body temperature, and rheumatic afflictions. In the 19th century observations were made concerning the impact of music on the psyche, and hence its influence on blood circulation, pressure, pulse, breathing, and muscle tone (1, 2, 3). Nowadays, one pays attention to the fact that music is a type of communication, as universal as other fields of art. Music intensifies some feelings and creates conditions for transmitting and disclosing various emotional conditions. This quality of music (emotionality) is used in therapy. It provokes deeper experiencing and expression of emotions, such as laughter, crying, anger, irritation, joy, etc. (4, 5). Therefore, one may say that experiencing music enriches the internal life of a person and is a means for shaping the psyche, correction of interpersonal relations, inspiring exchange of views with other people, facilitation of the patient?s contacts with the environment (the therapist, fellow patients) and the therapist?s contact with the patient. It helps to find common language through analysis of a piece of music that one has listened to. Additionally, music supports intellectual development, and, at the same time, the sense of self-esteem, as well as better understanding of life values, its purpose and sense (6, 7).
Types of music therapy
Music therapy can be divided into:
RECEPTIVE ? it consists in listening to fragments of music pieces, discussing, sharing emotions, impressions, interpretation of symbols. It has the following roles: stimulates emotional activity; makes a person aware of various experiences (pleasant and difficult) and helps to name them; strengthens mutual contacts (the purpose connects the participants); and releases such reactions as understanding, trust, and tolerance.
Music, through common experiencing of emotions, aims at breaking some previous patterns, such as: ?I do not know?, ?I do not remember?, or ?I do not feel?. It leads to neutralization of the condition of tension ? causing muscle relaxation, maintenance of calm breathing, and regular heartbeat (8, 9).
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