Music therapy helps young cancer patients

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

music notes
Music composition provides patients a source of comfort in an otherwise dark and scary time.

According to a study from the journal Cancer, music therapy can help adolescent cancer patients get through tough treatments. Individuals aged 11-24 who produced their own music videos grew stronger against their illness and made deeper connections with their friends and families.

The cancer patients spent three weeks working with a music therapist, composing music, writing lyrics, and collecting images to tell their own story. They then shared their artistic creations through special premieres with loved ones.

The patients involved in the study reported feeling more connected, while their parents told researchers they understood their children’s feelings more. Additionally, the music-making patients felt stronger in the face of their illness, even 100 days after receiving treatment.

Researchers claim this is because the projects provided the young patients with a familiar connection in the midst of an uncertain sickness. Who knew strumming a guitar and playing the ivory keys could be such a relief?

Featured image courtesy of Lesley Keller on Wikipedia. Image of musical notes courtesy of Daniel Paxton on Flickr.