Friday, October 25, 2013

Music Helps With Chronic Pain

For those who suffer or have ever suffered with chronic pain, you know how debilitating that can be. It colors your whole world. I have fortunately kept mine, for the most part, in check with herbs and supplements (with a very occasional Aleve).  But in some cases certain herbs that are good for pain and inflammation aren't always good for people on certain allopathic medications. Turmeric (Curcumin), for example, is a wonderful anti-inflammatory and part of my Rheumatoid Arthritis regimen, but people on blood thinners (Coumadin etc) should not take Turmeric.  Same thing with ginger.  And sometimes, just like western medicine, certain herbs are of no help either..  So what can people who would rather shun western medicine, or can't do herbs turn to for help with pain?  Music, apparently.

According to an article in the U.K. Telegraph, research by Lloyds pharmacy found that listening to music can actually help ease pain. It's not a huge percentage but 41 percent- or four in ten people- found some relief.

The younger generation seemed to benefit the most, with 66 percent of  16 to 24-year-olds finding relief.

As for the genre of music:

Pop music was found to be the most effective for 21 per cent of patients, followed by classical (17 per cent) and rock or indie (16 per cent).
The most effective songs were "Bridge Over Troubled Water" by Simon and Garfunkel, "Angels" by Robbie Williams, and "Albatross" by Fleetwood Mac.
These were followed by "Candle in the Wind" by Elton John, and "Easy" by "The Commodores".

Lloyds Pharmacy is now adding music as part of its "pain service" in some of its locations on a trial basis.

According to David Bradshaw of The University of Utah Pain Management Centre:

 "People in pain should try to find some activity to get fully engaged in. Listening to favourite music is excellent for that because it can involve both thoughts and feelings. No matter how anxious you may feel, if you can get absorbed in the music this can help with your pain. Choose music you like and know well, humming or singing along can help you engage in listening and distract you from your pain."
So grab whatever music makes you feel good and see if it works for you.

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