The role of music in our well-being

With an upbeat interest in herbalism comes the natural curiosity of what else is possible to help naturally improve our well-being and we can't avoid the fact that music has been renowned for healing not only the psyche, but also the body. 

As herbalists,  we also can relate and learn from how plants react to sound, and like people, different plants like different music, which depends on factors such as if they are a day plant or a night plant. Same as people tend to cope with certain stressful situations with the aid of distinctive music, plants release sound emissions from different organs in response to different situations. It has been shown that plants have small and highly sensitive sound receivers and they emit faint ultrasound in case of stress. For example, plants can hear caterpillar’s chewing and set up the appropriate defences and start producing chemicals that increase leaves bitterness. Or plants that need bees to pollinate them, but don’t want wasps or flies, will ‘listen’ for the right buzz before letting go of the pollen.

And as we can learn a lot from plants, understanding how underlying conditions can be eased and even helped with music and why is it that our minds and bodies crave a certain frequency of music, especially heavily dependent on certain situations that are happening in our lives. 

The evolution of music as therapy began as a key element of healing in a magical or ritual context. An important figure with great interest in how music affects our well-being was the philosopher Plato. He believed that music helps to deal with feelings of anxiety and that mystic music provokes spiritual ecstasy that heals and purifies the soul.

More recent research suggested involving music during operating procedures, which has resulted in reductions in post-operative pain, the amount of sedative and analgesic medication needed, and even an overall improvement in the post-operative recovery period.

As it is known, everything resonates and vibrates at a certain rhythm and sound being a vibration that interacts with our energy field and specific frequencies can directly impact our brainwaves. For instance, higher frequencies, like those found in upbeat tunes, can stimulate the brain, triggering the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine, which are associated with feelings of joy and pleasure. 

There is a thing called binaural beats that occurs when you are listening to two different frequencies in each ear. The brain perceives a third tone, known as the binaural beat, which has a frequency equal to the difference between the two original tones. Those beats are known to affect the mood and even cognitive functions, for example a beat at a frequency of 10 Hz is associated with improved focus and concentration. 

However, all of our brains are wired in unique ways and as different plants need different frequency music depending on the type of plant, so do people.  What might seem as totally discomforting and even distressing music to some people, causes other people to feel more relaxed, cope better with certain situations or be more productive. Some may feel that their taste in music is not aligning with what is considered to be normal, and therefore may feel self-conscious about sharing it with others and why it is important to accept that everyone's response to music is different and everyone finds their own healing in a variety of vibrations and frequencies.,the%20stem%20of%20the%20plant.

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