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Music therapy reduces depression in young people, study finds

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Music therapy helps reduce depression in children and adolescents with emotional problems, a new study has revealed.

Researchers at Bournemouth University and Queen’s University Belfast, in partnership with Every Day Harmony (the brand name for Northern Ireland Music Therapy Trust), discovered that young people aged between 8 and sixteen, had significant improved self-esteem and reduced depression after receiving music therapy compared with those who did not.

Music therapy also helped young people aged 13 and over improve their communicative and interactive skills as well as improving social functioning across all analysed age groups.

Study leader, professor Sam Porter of the Department of Social Sciences and Social Work at Bournemouth University, said: ‘This study is hugely significant in terms of determining effective treatments for children and young people with behavioural problems and mental health needs.

‘The findings contained in our report should be considered by healthcare providers and commissioners when making decisions about the sort of care for young people that they wish to support.’

In the largest ever study of its kind, 251 children and young people were involved in the study, which took place between March 2011 and May 2014.

They were divided into two groups: 128 underwent the usual care options, while 123 were assigned to music therapy in addition to usual care. All were being treated for emotional, developmental or behavioural problems.

The post Music therapy reduces depression in young people, study finds appeared first on M magazine: PRS for Music online magazine.

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