Music therapy

Think back to the moment a love song on the radio tugged at your heartstrings, how dissonance in horror films makes you sit at the edge of your seat, or how a specific song takes you back to a cherished memory. Music and sound can remarkably influence our body and mind, and music therapy harnesses this power and channels it towards addiction recovery, using music’s profound impact to facilitate healing and transformation.

Music therapy is used as part of Oasis Bradford’s rehab programme to encourage mindful treatment and long-term recovery.


Music therapy - headphones

What is music therapy?

Music therapy is a specialised field that utilises music’s power to address individuals’ physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs. It is an evidence-based practice that involves the deliberate use of musical interventions by trained and certified music therapists to achieve therapeutic goals. Music therapists employ techniques such as singing, playing musical instruments, composing, improvising, and listening to music in therapeutic settings tailored to each individual’s unique needs.

The primary aim of music therapy is to enhance well being and it is tailored to meet the unique needs of each individual by a trained professional. It can be utilised within healthcare, educational or community settings to support individuals of all ages with various conditions. Music therapy is based on the understanding that music can engage multiple brain areas, stimulate emotions, foster connections, and provide nonverbal communication. It can be particularly beneficial for individuals with mental health disorders, such as Alzheimer’s, developmental disabilities, chronic pain, and those undergoing rehabilitation.

What to expect from a music therapy session

Music therapy sessions are tailored to meet the unique needs, preferences, and goals of each client. The approach taken in a session can range from highly structured to completely unstructured, depending on what is best for the individual. Additionally, the number of attendees, session length and frequency can vary, allowing for a unique experience that maximises the therapeutic benefits of music.

A music therapist may use a range of activities and techniques that promote overall well-being, including:

  • Listening to recorded music
  • Listening to live music
  • Singing
  • Song writing
  • Playing instruments
  • Improvisation
  • Movement to music

All of these can help you explore different aspects of emotions, thoughts, memories and experiences. Music can also help you to deal with the challenging moments that occur during recovery and provides a distraction from the demanding nature of rehabilitation, allowing you to discover newfound strength and peace.

How does music therapy for addiction recovery work?

Addiction is a powerful condition with physical, emotional, societal and psychological factors. As humans and addiction are highly complex, effectively treating addiction can be challenging. However, holistic therapies like music therapy can be very effective in healing your mental, physical, and spiritual states, which is pivotal for addiction recovery.

Music therapy utilises music and musical interventions led by trained therapists to achieve specific therapeutic goals. The sessions can include listening to music, singing, playing musical instruments, composing music, improvising, and moving to music. The choice of interventions depends on the individual’s goals and preferences.

It is important to note that music therapy is not a substitute for psychotherapeutic techniques; it is, however, a valuable complement to be used alongside them during comprehensive rehab treatment.


Music therapy - person playing instrument


What are the benefits of music therapy?

Music therapy offers a number of benefits across various aspects of well being, some examples being:

  • Promoting self-expression
  • Reducing cravings
  • Managing withdrawal symptoms
  • Improving confidence and self-esteem
  • Feeling motivated
  • Managing stress
  • Promoting wellness
  • Enhancing memory and cognition
  • Expressing difficult or repressed feelings
  • Improving communication
  • Promoting physical rehabilitation
  • Alleviating pain

Given that these benefits are integral to recovery, many rehabilitation centres incorporate music therapy as a holistic approach to overcoming addiction.

Music therapy at Oasis Bradford

At Oasis Bradford, we understand the significance of adopting a comprehensive approach to achieve long-lasting recovery. We encourage the inclusion of music therapy, with qualified music therapists who specialise in recovery care within our rehab programmes.

To discover more about our addiction treatment programmes that incorporate music therapy, contact us today. We understand the hesitation that accompanies taking that first step to recovery, but we are here to provide unwavering support throughout your entire recovery journey.

Frequently asked questions

Does music therapy Cost Extra in my rehab programme?
It does not cost extra to include music therapy in your rehabilitation programme at Oasis Bradford. We offer a range of therapeutic techniques, such as music therapy, to help you get through your addiction, including music therapy. This ensures the best chance of a well-rounded and long-lasting recovery.
Is music therapy evidence-based?
While less studied than more traditional therapies, holistic therapies are being researched more in-depth to help treat a range of conditions, including addiction. Music therapy is one of these techniques, with more and more evidence stacking in favour of its effectiveness. Music therapy can reduce the intensity of pain, symptoms of anxiety and depression, increase sleep quality and improve the quality of life for individuals with conditions like autism. Music can also activate the centres of our brain responsible for motor control, speech and overall cognition.