Activate Now
ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help

Fibromyalgia  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & M.E.  Natural Wellness  Supplement News  Forums  Our Story
Store     Brands   |   A-Z Index   |   Best Sellers   |   New Products   |   Deals & Specials   |   Under $10   |   SmartSavings Club

Trending News

How One LLND Treats Lyme disease and Co-infections Using Natural Medicine

12 Celebrities with Lyme Disease

Single Low-magnitude Electric Pulse Successfully Fights Inflammation

Sexual Transmission of Lyme Disease: a Paradigm Shift

Why Is Spicy Food Good for You?

Omega-3 fatty acids may help improve treatment, quality of life in cancer patients

Parasites and Worms As Major Complicating Co-Factors In Lyme Disease Recovery

How Essential Oils Can Help Improve Your Life

Ask the Doctor- Is it possible to be fully healed from or cured of Lyme Disease?

Anti-histamine drug Claritin can kill Borrelia by interfering with manganese utilization

Print Page
Email Article

Effects of Music Therapy on Fibromyalgia

  [ 13 votes ]   [ 3 Comments ]
By Shivani Lalloo • • February 28, 2014

Effects of Music Therapy on Fibromyalgia
Reprinted with the kind permission of Shivani Lalloo and FMA UK.

What is Music Therapy?

Music therapy is defined by Munro and Mount (1978) as the controlled use of music and its influence on humans to aid the integration of physiology, emotions, and psychology, during treatment. The combination of using music as a therapy for treating illnesses has been common throughout centuries, especially during the Renaissance era. A music therapist will use music to facilitate behavioral changes, by allowing patients to use a variety of musical instruments. Then, the therapist will engage in discussions about the patient’s musical interaction, allowing the patient to express his or her feelings with the aid of musical interaction. This form of therapy falls under the concept of music psychology, which is the psychology behind pitch perception and performance. Vink (2001) states that, according to music psychology, patients with little knowledge of music theory respond with the same emotional intensity to music as knowledgeable music performers. Therefore, the main aim of music therapy is to determine how patients respond emotionally to music, and improve cognitive functioning and quality of life.

How Music Therapy applies to Fibromyalgia

Bicknell (2011) states that music therapy has been used for pain management and it improves the quality of life. Bicknell proposes that music relieves pain by distracting oneself from pain intensity, by disturbing the body’s pain and stress feedback loop, which evaluates one’s sensitivity to pain. This happens because music influences different neurochemical effects, which distracts one from negative feelings and past experiences of pain. Music can also inhibit the release of stress hormones and decrease the arousal of the pituitary-adrenal stress axis, which are responsible for increased pain intensity. Music can also influence the opioid system of the brain, which is responsible for the control of physical pain and negative emotions.

Therefore music therapy can be used to alleviate symptoms of pain and quality of life for fibromyalgia pain, by distracting patients from the experience of pain and negative emotions.

What Researchers Found

Onieva-Zafra and others (2011) examined the effects of music therapy on fibromyalgia, and found that music therapy, combined with relaxation techniques, reduced pain and depression, along with improving sleep for fibromyalgia patients. The aim of this study was to examine the efficacy of using music as an intervention for pain and depression.

The researchers completed this study by using a 4-week longitudinal trial design, in which sixty fibromyalgia patients were assigned to a music intervention group or a control group. The participants of the music intervention group listened to music daily for 4 weeks, and were assigned to listen to two types of music. The participants were also taught relaxation techniques, and the combination of relaxation techniques and music therapy significantly decreased pain intensity and improved quality of life. After 4 weeks, participants of the music intervention group reported a significant decrease of pain, while participants of the control group experienced no change in pain and quality of life. Researchers greatly recommend the combination of music and relaxation for patients with fibromyalgia and other conditions of chronic pain. However, the efficacy of this combination depends on the patient’s dedication and willpower to be involved in the treatment.

Further Research

Chanda and Levitin (2013) described the neurochemical effects of music and how it helps with chronic pain. The researchers state that musical interventions decreased cortisol and endorphins, which are markers of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (responsible for release of stress hormones), along with decreasing levels of cortisol, prolactin, ACTH, growth hormone, and norepinephrine levels. Chanda and Levitin (2013) state that music initiates brain responses that reduce muscle tension, heart rate, and skin conductance. This relates to Onieva-Zafra and others’ (2011) study, in which they state that music interventions decrease pain intensity. If music is able to reduce muscle tension, then possibly the muscle pain experienced in fibromyalgia may decrease. Additionally, if music interventions do decrease the release of stress hormones, then most of the emotional and anxiety symptoms of fibromyalgia may decrease. Chanda and Levitin (2013) also provide evidence that music improves mood and stress, and it may also increase one’s immunity.


Chanda, M. L., & Levitin, D. J. (2013). The neurochemistry of musicTrends in cognitive sciences17(4), 179-193.

María Dolores Onieva-Zafra, Adelaida María Castro-Sánchez, Guillermo A. Matarán-Peñarrocha, Carmen Moreno-Lorenzo. Effect of Music as Nursing Intervention for People Diagnosed with FibromyalgiaPain Management Nursing, 2010.

Vink, A. (2001). Music and emotion: Living apart together: A relationship between music psychology and music therapy. Nordic Journal of Music Therapy10(2), 144-158.


Please Discuss This Article:   Post a Comment 

Thank You Shivani Lalloo
Posted by: coachmel
Mar 1, 2014
I really appreciate your article. I am a life coach who works with people, like myself, that experience chronic pain and fatigue. I also write articles and host a website dedicated to educating and supporting. My sister-in-law experienced the symptoms of dementia. While she was living in a nursing facility my brother contracted with a local music therapy company for a music therapist to work with her. She always enjoyed her sessions and would sing along. We also noticed that when the nursing facility had visiting musical talent, some of the patients would be asleep in wheel chairs before the music started and then become totally alert, clapping, and singing along. I am excited about sharing your article with my community and doing more research in this area.

Wishing You Best Days,
Reply Reply

Importance of music therapy for treating chronic pain
Posted by: SiSiRN
Mar 3, 2014
A thorough review of how music affects the body, what researchers have found, and how music can be a legitimate therapy for chronic pain. I agree with everything in this article and that is why there is a section in our next book on this very thing. I hope many will come to read it, because I am sharing it throughout my networks. Bravo!
Reply Reply

I use this
Posted by: Cattttttt
Mar 27, 2014
It works for me. When i am even the most fatigued, it can pick me up and increase my energy level.
It has been used to increase exercise tolerance and endurance for a long time.
Reply Reply

Post a Comment

Free Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia Newsletters
Subscribe to
Subscribe Now!
Receive up-to-date ME/CFS & Fibromyalgia treatment and research news
 Privacy Guaranteed  |  View Archives

Save on Nutritional Supplement Orders

Featured Products

Vitamin D3 Extreme™ Vitamin D3 Extreme™
50,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Prescription Strength
Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor® Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor®
Reduce Fatigue up to 45%
Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil Ultra EPA - Fish Oil
Ultra concentrated source of essential fish oils
Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra ATP+, Double Strength
Get energized with malic acid & magnesium
Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Energy NADH™ 12.5mg
Improve Energy & Cognitive Function

Natural Remedies

Block Acid Reflux to Prevent Esophageal Problems! Block Acid Reflux to Prevent Esophageal Problems!
Aches and Pains? A Simple Solution You'll Love Aches and Pains? A Simple Solution You'll Love
Can Glycine + Amino Acids Be the Secret to Deep, Rejuvenating Sleep? Can Glycine + Amino Acids Be the Secret to Deep, Rejuvenating Sleep?
The Brain Boosting and Fatigue Fighting B-12 The Brain Boosting and Fatigue Fighting B-12
Natural Support for Mood, Sleep and Mental Focus? L-theanine Natural Support for Mood, Sleep and Mental Focus? L-theanine

What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia Diagnosis
Fibromyalgia Symptoms
Fibromyalgia Treatments
What is CFS?
ME/CFS Diagnosis
ME/CFS Symptoms
ME/CFS Treatments
ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus
Credit Card Processing