Friday, July 17, 2009

Music and Depression... hmmm...

Recently, a story emerged in media outlets around the world about a a 45-year-old elephant and long-time resident of the Zagreb Zoo,being inconsolable after her pachyderm partner of tens years died of cancer. By coincidence the zoo had organized a concert of classical chamber music right across from Suma's dwelling. At first Suma was anxious and unhappy about the musicians setting up so close to her but once the music started, Suma closed her eyes, leaned against the fence and was motionless throughout the concert. Now the zoo has set up a stereo in her area and she is beginning to feel better and emerge from her depression, thanks to Mozart, Bach and Pachelbel.

Research shows that music activates the same parts of the brain and causes the same neurochemical cocktail as a lot of other pleasurable activities like orgasms or eating chocolate.

Music is being used as an antidepressant to regulate moods, whether it’s playing something peppy in the morning, soothing at the end of a hard day, or motivating to get people to exercise. If you’re feeling depressed or down-in-the-dumps, music that you like can activate the pleasure areas of the brain.

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