Four benefits of music for your health

Over the years, music-based strategies have been investigated for everything from hospital stays to walking to sleep, yielding positive results. It has also been shown to have therapeutic benefits for people living with dementia. While music is a safe, simple, inexpensive strategy, it continues to be an underused tool. Consider incorporating more music into your everyday life, whether for yourself or a loved one.


Music can improve walking speed

Whether you realize it or not, you may be training yourself for a longer, healthier, and more active lifestyle by listening to music while you walk. Walking speed is a reflection of health and fitness and is a good predictor of how long and well you may live.


Music can enhance sleep quality

Getting good quality sleep can positively impact our mental, cognitive, and physical health. Although medications for sleep-related issues exist, they are associated with unwanted side effects, such as an increased risk of illness, dependence, and death. Alternatively, music-based interventions—which generally involve listening to music and, in some cases, also making it—are non-drug strategies that appear to have the potential to improve sleep quality.


Music can improve cognitive health

Active music-making therapy may improve cognitive functioning by a small but important amount in older adults with cognitive impairment or mild to moderate dementia. Music-making therapy might involve singing, improvisation, reacting to a sound (for example, hearing a drum) by clapping, playing percussion instruments, and music combined with exercise.


Music can help older adults with dementia feel calm

Studies have shown that listening to music allows older adults with dementia to be more relaxed, which indirectly helps reduce caregivers' stress levels. Also, group music therapy sessions led by trained music therapists helped reduce caregivers’ anxiety by allowing them to express and share their feelings.


Music is a safe, non-invasive, cost-effective strategy in many scenarios. Read through the Blog Posts below to learn more about its benefits.

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DISCLAIMER: Many of our Blog Posts were written before the COVID-19 pandemic and thus do not necessarily reflect the latest public health recommendations. While the content of these blogs identify activities that support optimal aging, it is important to defer to the most current public health recommendations such as social distancing and frequent hand washing. Some of the activities suggested within these blogs may need to be modified or avoided altogether to comply with current social distancing recommendations. To view the latest updates from the Public Health Agency of Canada, please visit their website