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How Music Therapy Could Help Treat Addiction

a man leans back in a chair listening to music with headphones

Addiction treatment comes in a variety of forms. Medication-assisted treatment is the most helpful for some, while others may consider group therapy the most beneficial. A music therapy program is a lesser-known but successful alternative treatment option at Northpoint Recovery in Seattle. Recovery can be a difficult and draining process. Don’t wait; reach out to one of our professionals today at 888.483.6031 to discuss music therapy treatment options for you.

What is Music Therapy?

Music has always been an essential aspect of our daily lives and cultures. It provides entertainment, relaxation, and even background noise for other activities. Music also motivates people of all walks of life to reach goals or complete activities such as exercise. The versatility of music means we’re discovering new ways to use it all the time.

Music produces several good, bad, or neutral emotions that can create a strong bond between the music and the person. Some people gain energy from music, and some find recognition within the lyrics. Since so many people have a strong emotional connection to music, we can use it to treat substance use and mental health disorders. When it is applied by a trained professional, it can become an effective music therapy.

Music Therapy and Addiction Treatment

One of the many benefits of using music therapy is the safe application it uses in nearly any therapy context, such as:

  • Group therapy
  • Intensive inpatient treatment programs
  • Intensive outpatient treatment programs
  • Any other form of formal intervention

Since it is so versatile, music therapy can be a helpful method for treating addiction. Many people wonder how music therapy could help treat addiction as a primary intervention. However, music therapy programs primarily work in conjunction with other treatment plans. Music therapy and addiction treatment can be highly successful when a music therapist creates and uses the two methods in sync. Music therapy helps treat addiction by relieving stress, helping patients relax, increasing focus on recovery, and helping patients who have difficulty adjusting to recovery.

Music therapy programs have specific goals and, when applied by a music therapist, are used to reach these goals. While people use music outside of a professional environment for therapeutic purposes, it is not a complete substitute for a formal addiction treatment plan. Instead, music therapy can enhance traditional addiction treatment programs.

Goals of Music Therapy

The patient and the music therapist may each have specific goals when treating addiction with music. The music therapist is meant to consult and actively work with the rest of the patient’s treatment team to develop a practical approach to music therapy. Some patient goals and recovery milestones might be:

  • Adjusting emotionally to the treatment plan
  • Improving physical health and mental wellbeing through stress-relief
  • Developing communication skills
  • Focusing on the development of specific things such as attention and memory
  • Increasing social functioning by introducing them to patients with similar music tastes

Music therapy’s effects when helping to treat addiction can vary. When the music therapist addresses the patient’s specific needs and develops a treatment plan, the patient may not have any background or formal music knowledge. The patient should only work to be responsive to the music and have a specific music genre that they enjoy.

Learn More About Treating Addiction with Music Therapy at Northpoint Recovery

Music therapy and addiction treatment may sound like an unlikely pairing, but the program can be a relaxing and practical addition to your therapy plan. If you are interested in seeing how music therapy could help treat addiction for you or a loved one, reach out to one of our healthcare professionals today at 888.483.6031 to learn more about our music therapy programs.