What is Music Therapy?
- Music therapy is an evidence-based allied health service similar to physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology
- Music therapy uses music as the therapeutic tool to address nonmusical change
- Music therapy can address physical, cognitive, social, emotional, psychological, spiritual, and/or behavioral needs
What are Some Benefits of Music Therapy?
- Decrease pain, tension, and shortness of breath
- Increase comfort/relaxation
- Decrease nausea and vomiting
- Heighten cognitive ability
- Increase sensory stimulation
- Facilitate reminiscence
Emotional, Spiritual, and Psychosocial
- Improve mood and affect
- Provide emotional and spiritual support
- Structure social interaction
- Increase opportunities for personal choice and successful opportunities
- Decrease fear and anxiety
- Increase interest, esteem, and coping ability
- Increase self-expression
- Increase satisfaction with life and sense of belonging
What are Some Music Therapy Interventions Used in Hospice and Palliative care?
- Song selection/dedication
- Music listening
- Music facilitated reminiscence/life review
- Music-assisted relaxation and pain management
- Creation/discussion of music legacy
- Guided relaxation
- Validation of spiritual beliefs
- Validation of heritage
- Funeral planning
- Lyric analysis
- Playing instruments
- Mood vectoring
- Music and movement
- Music discussion/education
- Iso principle
The Role of the Music Therapist Is To:
- Identify client and family needs
- Determine how music therapy can complement and enhance the work of other members of the treatment team
- Determine which aspects of music facilitate the desired outcomes
- Systematically apply the appropriate music therapy interventions to achieve the desired outcomes
How are Music Therapy Sessions Structured?
- Sessions may vary in structure depending on immediate needs
- The music therapist will conduct ongoing assessments of immediate client and family needs during each intervention, with modifications made as needed
- Family, friends, and members of the interdisciplinary team are welcome to join visits
How Do I Know if Someone is Qualified to Provide Music Therapy Services?
- Qualified music therapists carry the credential MT-BC indicating that they have passed the national, independent certification board exam and have maintained awareness of current practice through continuing education or retesting. DO NOT work with anyone claiming to be a music therapist without the MT-BC designation.
- To confirm MT-BC status go to: http://www.cbmt.org/certificant_search
- Music therapists may carry the designation of Neurologic Music Therapist, which means that they have undergone additional training in this specific model of music therapy. Neurologic Music Therapist Fellow indicates that they have successfully passed advanced training & peer review of Neurologic Music Therapy techniques.
- It is highly recommended that those with neurologic issues (stroke, Parkinson’s, TBI) work primarily with Neurologic Music Therapy Fellows, or if they are not available in your area, Neurologic Music Therapists.