Sanjoy Dey

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Music is one of the most beautiful creations of art. It has the power to heal our mind, body, and soul through its soothing effect. Different people have different tastes in music and it works as a therapy for them. Music aids in expressing ourselves. It can help in healing conditions like depression, Alzheimer and insomnia. A lot of people overlook music’s ability to heal, and help those in the hospital or diagnosed with a disability, to deal with anxiety or stress, music therapy is something all hospitals and medical offices should consider if applicable. Music Therapy can and has helped millions of people around the world as a coping mechanism, helping those awake from a coma and helping people with disabilities. Music Therapy is a unique approach to helping an individual overcome whatever it is they are facing. Everybody loves music and since music is the universal language, there should be more and more music therapy schools and clinics. Music therapy should become a dominant facet of the medical field. Not too long ago, a friend of mine was informed of a relative who went into a coma after a terrible horse-riding accident. His father, who is a musician, was asked to come to play some music by her favorite artist, Johnny Cash, weeks after the accident occurred. After playing the lady a couple of Johnny Cash’s songs, he packed up his guitar and headed home. Halfway home he received a phone call saying the lady woke from her coma and was asked to come back and play some more music for her. The power of music is indescribable. Music therapy has been around a lot longer than most people would expect. After World War I & II, musicians would go to hospitals all over the country to play for Veterans facings many forms of trauma. After seeing the impact music had on the Veterans nationwide, musicians were soon employed by the hospitals. Soon to follow suit, there was a need in the college curriculum so these musicians could have some form of training in the medical field. Three essential power players, Ira Altshuler, Willem van de Wall, and E. Thayer Gaston, were the first to move this sort of profession into the educational sphere in the 1940s. Michigan State University was the first college to add music therapy as a major in 1944. Soon after, several colleges like Chicago Musical College, College of the Pacific, and others, introduced a Music Therapy program to students making music therapy as a profession more attainable. In the 1940s, The Music Teachers National Associate (MTNA) created programs to inform musicians, physicians, and psychiatrists, of the many ways music can be implied in schools and hospitals. As of today, music therapy is alive and well in as many as 30 countries and 6 continents.


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