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No More Achy Breaky Heart: Five Reasons Music is Good for Your Ticker!

February 7, 2018 - Music and Health

Smiling Heart

February is all about heart. That’s because it is the American Heart Month, intended, according to the American Heart Association, “to help everyone live longer, healthier lives so they can enjoy all of life’s precious moments.”

We, um, wholeheartedly, agree with this goal and are happy to play our role in helping all our students be healthy and happy. How? While it may not be immediately obvious that a music school has anything to do with cardiovascular health, it actually does.

In fact, research suggests that music can – both literally and figuratively – mend broken hearts. Of course, music alone can’t do this; other factors such as a healthy diet, exercise, and tobacco-free life are very important.

But music can certainly play (no pun intended) its part. Here are five ways how this is done:

  1. Music reduces stress and anxiety, both of which can cause abnormal heart rhythms and palpitations.
  2. It helps lower high blood pressure, which is one of the factors of heart disease. Research shows that exposure to music slows down the respiratory rate and reduces hypertension.
  3. By reducing stress and anxiety (see #2), music can also alleviate the symptoms of depression. And yes, evidence shows a link between the two conditions: studies demonstrate that depressed people are almost twice as likely to develop heart disease.
  4. It helps the healing and recovery process after heart surgery. Some top hospitals, including the Mayo Clinic, play soothing music to their post-op patients.
  5. Though playing a musical instrument is not exactly an intensive workout, it does burn calories and help keep your heart healthy.

Heartfelt Music

There is also another heart-related event in February: Valentine’s Day on the 14th, when giving and receiving of love is celebrated.

Songs are a huge part of this holiday. While they have no direct influence on physical health, love songs evoke so many positive emotions that make our hearts go flutter!

Isn’t it worth celebrating anything that makes us feel happy?

Photo: Happy Heart courtesy of fauxto_digit and Flickr
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