Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Music Is Good for Your Health

Check out the ways that playing an instrument or listening to tunes can boost your health.
(From NIH News in Health –> )
Conditions and areas that may benefit include Parkinson’s diseases, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, traumatic brain injury, stroke, aphasia, autism, and hearing loss.
A research team found that music has positive effects on kids’ learning abilities, even when the training starts as late as high school. And “music therapists are trained in how to use music to meet the mental, social, and physical needs of people with different health conditions.”

PubMed references are included!

February 2, 2018 Posted by | Health News Items, Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

5 reasons why music would be great for digital health

From the 26 July 2013 KevinMD entry

 | TECH | JULY 24, 2013

Music as a healing mechanism has been accepted for over 50 years. Music is a source of primal memory similar to that of smell. It has been used in brain injury patient management, as well as to promote wellness, manage stress alleviate pain, promote physical rehabilitation, and enhance memory in Alzheimer’s Disease patients.I have appreciated the power of music my whole life and as a physician and musician, realized its healing potential early on in my medical career. I burned CDs of the music chosen by my patients to be played during their surgery (usually performed with light sedation) and gave it to them as a surprise at their office follow-up visit.

I will lightly touch on some reasons why music would be a great digital health technology.

1. There are scientific studies to provide evidence of efficacy. There are very few digital health technologies that are mobile technologies which have been proven to be efficacious. Since music has been digital for decades, it is a natural for adoption as a mobile health tech tool. Here’s a nice bibliography on the uses of music therapy. Areas such as mental health, special education and Autism, and pain management have been subjects of studies.

Read the entire article here


July 26, 2013 Posted by | health care | , , , , | Leave a comment

Exploring The Healing Powers Of Singing


choir-130 (Photo credit: Family Photo Archives)

While I don’t have cancer, I have many fond memories of marching/concert band in high school and college. It definitely made a difference in my sense of well being and sense of achievement.

From the 13 July 2012 article at Medical News Today

The Welsh cancer charity Tenovus and Cardiff University, both based in the UK, have reported that participation in a choir improves a number of quality of life factors for cancer survivors and their carers.

In an effort to create a community for cancer survivors and their carers, Tenovus established the choir, Sing for Life, in 2010. More than just a support group, the aim of the choir was to improve quality of life and emotional well-being in a more social setting.

…Analysis of the questionnaires revealed an improvement in factors ranging from vitality tomental health and reduced anxiety and depression after the three month period. There was no change in the level of fatigue or change in lung capacity, but there was a trend of increased maximal expiratory static mouth pressure (MEP), a test of the strength of respiratory muscles.

The perceived benefit of the choir was quite clear based on data from the interviewed participants. They commented on the benefits of having a common goal and looking forward to the performances. Overall, participation in the choir lifted the mood of many of the participants and gave them a sense of achievement.

July 13, 2012 Posted by | Psychology | , , | 2 Comments

Treating Stress, Speech Disorders With Music : NPR

Dr. Concetta M. Tomaino, DA, MT-BC, LCAT

Image via Wikipedia

[On a somewhat related on my read next..
Harnessed- How Language and Music Mimicked Nature and Transformed Ape to Man]

Treating Stress, Speech Disorders With Music : NPR

From the 16 December National Public Radio story

More and more hospitals and clinics now offer music therapy as a supplementary treatment for everything from anxiety to Alzheimer’s, but its efficacy varies for different conditions. Neurologist Oliver Sacks and several music therapists discuss the science and practice of music therapy….

FLATOW: Thank you for being with us. Connie Tomaino is the executive director and co-founder of the Institute for Music and Neurological Function at the Beth Abraham Family of Health Services in the Bronx, New York. She’s also here in our studios. Welcome, Dr. Tomaino.

CONCETTA TOMAINO: Pleasure to be here.

FLATOW: And Joke Bradt is an associate professor in the Creative Arts Therapies Department at Drexel University in Philadelphia; she joins us from the studios of WRTI. Welcome to the show, Dr. Bradt.

DR. JOKE BRADT: Thank you, and thanks for having me.

FLATOW: And we’re going to be talking with Connie – what exactly, how do you define music therapy, Dr. Tomaino?

TOMAINO: Well, music therapy is the use of music and the components of music to affect function, either cognitive, psychological, physical, most psychosocial and behavioral function, through interaction with a professional music therapist. Many times people assume something to be music therapy, but it really isn’t if it isn’t provided by a music therapist.

FLATOW: And that’s a good point, Dr. Bradt, is it not? It has to be somebody who knows what they’re doing, a trained musical therapist.

BRADT: Absolutely, and music therapists are actually trained at different levels. They can be trained at a Bachelor’s level, Master’s or even Ph.D. level. But as Dr. Tomaino just pointed out, it’s very important that music is provided by a trained music therapist because music truly plays a primary role in the therapeutic process, to strengthen the client’s abilities as well as to address their needs….

Article includes podcast and transcript

December 18, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment


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