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Researchers Question Whether Listening To Music In a Group Triggers Depression

Researchers Question Whether Listening To Music In a Group Triggers Depression

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As a music lover, I am always fascinated when new studies come out about music and mental health. Music has always been a way for me to escape from my chattering mind. That’s why I was surprised to read that listing to music in a group can actually trigger people with depression. Personally, I find listening to music in a group to be a different experience from listening to music by myself.

Whether it is a concert or a kick-back with friends, music brings us together. The question remains whether music shifts our mood depending on whether we are listening alone or with others.

A recent study analyzed how people with depression process and emotionally bond with music in a social setting. Music has a powerful way of affecting the listener, and the debate on whether music helps or hurt depression has gone on for quite some time. That being said, music can help someone suffering from depression feel better or it can make them feel worse.

The study examined how music affects someone’s mood and how people emotionally react to music in groups.  The study was published in Science Daily.

Nearly 700 people answered questions in an online survey about their listening habit. One of the questions was whether or not they listen to music in groups or not. Participants have to answer questions regarding their mental states as well.

Participants were asked to pick a song they would listen to when they felt sad. Researchers wanted to know whether they dwelled on their depression when they were unhappy and how much music affected their well-being.

The results from the study revealed that groups who listened to sad music and sad subjects felt more depression. Science Daily reports,

“This kind of group rumination was more common in younger people, and likely reflects relative importance of both music and social relationships.”

As Dr. Sandra Garrido told Science Daily,

“Behaviors relating to music use fall into distinct patterns, reflecting either healthy or unhealthy thought processes. These results reveal important information about how people with depression use music. While young people with tendencies to depression who are a part of social groups may be perceived as receiving valuable social support, our results here suggest that the positive impacts of such group interactions depend on the types of processes that are taking place in the group.”

It shouldn’t be surprising that sad music can have this kind of power in groups. Frontier explains the expression of emotions strengthens social bonds. Therefore, music strengthens relations between peers because of the signals that music gives about shared values.

The fact that music has this kind of power is not shocking to me. Whether you are feeling happy or sad, there is always a song to connect to during that experience. In a group setting, we are influenced by the energy around us. Therefore, when certain members of that group feel emotions, it vibrates throughout the rest of the group.

Music can be an incredible healing tool. What do you like to listen to? If you are struggling with mental illness or addiction, please reach out. Do now wait. Call now.

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