For many children, music is an important part of the healing process. Therefore, it’s no surprise that music therapy is one of our most funded projects in hospitals around the country. As a powerful tool, music therapy is clinically proven to improve cognitive function, motor skills, emotional and affective development, behavior and social skills, and quality of life of pediatric patients.
Music therapy can take form in a variety of ways based on the needs of the child, and typically involves music therapists working either with one patient at a time or in group sessions. The treatment can often include a patient listening to or moving to music. In these instances, music therapists play instruments and sing at the patients’ bedsides as well as create recordings that can be played for children in isolation and babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. As a creative outlet that provides distraction and gives children a means of expressing their emotions, music therapy also enables pediatric patients to create music with instruments or sing to music.
enCourage Kids has proudly funded the Music Therapy Program at Blythedale Children’s Hospital since 2013, making it an integral part of their Child Life Program. For patients in their Traumatic Brain Injury Unit, one of the largest populations served by this program, therapy sessions are highly effective. They induce relaxation, provide sensory stimulation, decrease pain, promote self-expression, and increase a sense of control and empowerment. Additionally, music therapy has proven its ability to decrease stress hormones, stabilize heart rates, and stimulate brain activity and recovery, even when patients are in vegetative or minimally conscious states.
Music therapy is an important part of the hospital healing experience and is vital to promoting health and reaching the social, emotional, physical, and cognitive goals of pediatric patients.