Curated by RSF Research Staff
Music for the Heart
However, Heart-Rate-Variability (HRV) has multiple layers of specific fractal wave patterns that may give us answers on the activity of our “fight-or-flight” or the “rest-and-digest” part of the autonomic nervous system (ANS). A recent Position Paper of the European Society for Cardiology (ESC) has concluded, mathematical advances including analyzing fractality and entropy has not yet entered the clinical studies in this field, and calls for more research into this promising technique. It is important to know, the arrangement of the heartbeats have a huge feedback impact on our brain and psyche. The more you entrain your heart to a coherent breath and feelings of joy, love and gratitude, the more your brain will let go of anxieties and sorrows.
Anyway, we know sound is defined as a quantum field. It has been inconclusive, if music would have an influence on the Heart-Rate-Variability, but Dr. Naresh Sen recognized it was not documented which music was used in previous studies. He conducted a study to differentiate between Pop-Music, Silence and Yoga-Music before bedtime in 149 healthy individuals and presented the results at the ESC Congress 2018. The results indicate an advantage of Yoga-Music over Silence. Pop-Music was rather arousing for the autonomic nervous system. Sleep hygiene is very important on the long run, because the secretion of melatonin during sleep is responsible for healing and repair mechanisms. Even the old Greek based their medical treatment on “incubation”, healing sleep in a dormitory as a prescription. Since Pythagoras (around 600 BC) they also discussed and used healing sounds and harmonic frequencies.
Science may have not always agreed, but Indians have long believed in the power of various therapies other than medicines as a mode of treatment for ailments. This is a small study, and more research is needed on the cardiovascular effects of music interventions offered by a trained music therapist. But listening to soothing music before bedtime is a cheap and easy to implement therapy that cannot cause harm.
Author: Dr. Johanna Deinert (MD), RSF Research Scientist