The scientific low-down on why pumping the tunes really does spread good vibes
Every time we listen to music, amazing neurological processes are taking place behind the scenes. Research from around the world has revealed a wide range of positive effects that music has on the brain – from increased creativity and decision making to better comprehension and more positive feelings.
And that’s not all – different types of music can affect us in different ways. Get your iPod ready, and read on to find out how.
1. HAPPY MUSIC MAKES US SEE PEOPLE IN A MORE POSITIVE LIGHT
Research from the University of London’s Department of Psychology found that listening to happy music can make us see people’s faces in a positive light – even if they’re wearing a blank facial expression.
2. CALM TUNES ENCOURAGE CREATIVITY
Ambient music increases abstract processes in the brain, which are responsible for creative thinking – according to research from the University of Chicago.
3. NEW MUSIC IMPROVES DRIVING SKILLS
According to research at Ben Gurion University, listening to new music – tunes that we haven’t heard before – can make us safer drivers.
4. LEARNING AN INSTRUMENT IMPROVES MOTOR AND COGNITIVE FUNCTION
Children who learn to play an instrument are likely to display higher language and motor skills, according to a University of St. Andrews study.
5. CLASSICAL MUSIC HAS THERAPEUTIC POWERS
A study on stroke patients, published in the American Journal of Occupational Therapy, revealed that the brain’s ability to process images improved among subjects who listened to classical music.
6. MUSIC BOOSTS PHYSICAL WORKOUTS
Moving in time with the beat makes physical workouts more effective, according to research from the US National Library of Medicine.