Posts tagged music therapy
"So baby please, open your eyes (wash your hands), and (don't) catch my disease.."

If you are a music therapist or a volunteer musician, a good rule of thumb is to follow the same protocol of the staff at any given facility. Any gear that used communally must have a hard, cleanable surface, and should really be cleaned in between every patient interaction. Now, in some settings you might adapt stricter rules to make things easier. For instance, at some day programs for seniors I’ll start and end each group by passing around hand sanitizer for each person to use. During the group, we interact and share instruments, and at the end of it I wipe down my musical instruments. But if you are visiting, say, a cancer center, you’d want to be much more careful. If patients can come out and join in a music group, they are likely not on specific precautions. If you are visiting patients’ rooms and working bedside, you’ll want to pay attention to specific precautions- and you may need to wear a mask, gloves, and/or a gown. Singing and playing guitar in a mask and gloves is a real adventure! It’s one of those things you don’t get to practice in music school, so you learn by doing. My advice is to size down on your gloves so that you can still play chords.

Unfortunately, the instruments that make the most beautiful sounds are usually the least infection-control-friendly. This is something I would love to see changed. Consider this blog a call to entrepreneurs, musicians, and luthiers: PLEASE create some therapy-friendly instruments! We need washable instruments. While you’re at it, we could also use some disability-friendly instruments. Something to consider! Developers could make a fortune off these things. And I won’t even take 10% for the idea- I’ll just take a few instruments for work ;). 

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A case (study) for hospital-based music therapy

Working together, we used music as a distraction, as a reward, and as the motivation. Responding to Mia’s actions and moods through musical improvisation meant that she felt understood and was more motivated to participate in the therapy session. The music pushed her to lift higher, stretch longer, and laugh in the middle of crying.

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Models of Music Therapy

any music therapist should have clinical practice backed by firm research and implemented with creativity and flexibility

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Music Therapy for Processing Emotion in Clients with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

This tension is representative of the aforementioned difficult emotions- suspense, uncertainty, sadness- and the resolution can help listeners move through these issues to a resolution of positivity. Unresolved tensions in music, as well as key changes or rhythmic surprises, can help listeners learn to deal with unexpected changes and accept them.

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Week in the Life of Maine Music & Health

In the afternoon I headed to York for a music therapy group in which we are working on breath support through singing and recorder playing.  

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"My life will fight in my body for air, 'cause your voices are all there" -Matisyahu

Nick, however, is honest about his reality and willing to talk about both the good and bad parts.  This kind of attitude seems to be the key to moving forward in life.

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