Music: youthful effects on the hearing brain
It has been said that art is the decoration for space, but music is how we decorate time. Music is more powerful than a language; it evokes past memories and can arouse intense emotions. But did you know that music can also be a catalyst for strengthening aspects of sound processing which help can improve hearing loss?
Studies have shown that musicians have less age-related loss in the auditory brain. That's because musical training strengthens the brain's cognitive abilities and sound processing. People with musical training are better able to separate sound, like in a noisy space, and focus on specific sounds. Furthermore, the studies indicate benefits from musical training pertain to seniors who rely on hearing aids, too.
And here is the really great news! Seniors who start learning music now, receive the same benefits as those who have been musicians their whole lives. By simply learning to play an instrument, you can mitigate, to some extent, the further corruption of hearing loss because your brain is training to hear separate sounds which aid in understanding speech. You are actively training your auditory processing system in the same way an athlete is strengthening his muscles.
According to The Hearing Journal, November 2018, hearing is connected to feeling, thinking and moving with emotional, cognitive, and sensorimotor benefits. Music as therapy for hearing loss is an easy and joyful way to help improve your quality of life. As a musician myself, I encourage seniors to explore the possibility of musical training to help improve their Golden Years.
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