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Altostrata

Music for self-care: calms hyperalertness, anxiety, aids relaxation and sleep

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Altostrata

I was recently in a study that included playing relaxing music while taking one's blood pressure. The music they played almost put me to sleep in the middle of the day.

 

It was called Namaste.

 

I've found soft music helps me sleep. I'm going to order it myself.

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Shanti

I love Namaste. They have a particular song "Jaya Shiva Shankara" that I love. I play music quietly in the background all the time. Mostly New Age music as it's very calming. I also love Deva Primal.

 

I read a good book once called The Secret Power of Music. I totally believe in the healing effects of music, for spirit and body.

 

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

This study of the hidden side of music and its subtle effects is one of the most detailed books ever written on the subject.

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Altostrata

Very enjoyable, thanks, Shanti.

 

I believe the music they used was a different Namaste, on Amazon as Namaste Yoga Song - Relaxing Music for Yoga Exercises at Home from Kundalini Yoga Music (Winter Hill).

 

Can't have too much namaste!

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Shanti

lol. I wondered if it was the same one. I do have the Yoga one. A song I love on there is Shadowfax's "Angel's Flight." Very beautiful! Is this the one you were referring to?

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rC16Mttvr68

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Shanti

Kitaro is another great artist I love. Very peaceful.

 

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summer

Kitaro is another great artist I love. Very peaceful.

 

http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gXZPaIl6us

 

 

I had to turn this off... the tears...had to stop.

 

However, thank you for this thread. I will listen again.

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Shanti

 

I had to turn this off... the tears...had to stop.

 

However, thank you for this thread. I will listen again.

 

Aww. Well that's no good for raising the spirits. Maybe this song is too dreary.

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summer

 

 

I had to turn this off... the tears...had to stop.

 

However, thank you for this thread. I will listen again.

 

Aww. Well that's no good for raising the spirits. Maybe this song is too dreary.

 

Not dreary at all... beautiful! Just my mood today.

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Altostrata

lol. I wondered if it was the same one. I do have the Yoga one. A song I love on there is Shadowfax's "Angel's Flight." Very beautiful! Is this the one you were referring to?

 

http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=rC16Mttvr68

 

Shanti, that is beautiful! I like these Windham Hill recordings.

 

I have a Kitaro album, agree it's very peaceful.

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Nadia

Hi everyone,

 

After trying to listen to classical music, folk music, etc. to try to calm down when I'm feeling very anxious, I have found that I have a really good response to entirely repetitive music like electronic lounge music. There is something hypnotic about it. I'm sure everyone is different, but I thought I'd mention it. I was heading towards panic after being offerred a new job today, and started listening to Nicolas Jaar and it somehow soothed me to the point I can keep working today.

 

When I'm not doing well I'm not able to listen to almost any music, even if it's calm, because it gets stuck in my head and haunts me the next day. But for some reason this seems neutral enough to be OK.

 

Last year I was also listening to music that's supposed to create calming theta waves... you can find some on YouTube, but I had mixed results.

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Nadia

Here's another one: "One Day" by Wankelmut.

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Nikki

Nadia so glad you found your calming music. You are working and offered another job?

 

Great news. It's makes 99% of the population nervous, so you are part if the crowd ;)

 

What works for me is Guided Meditation. I can't really seem to Meditate unless it is guided.

 

Years ago I would power walk and on the way would have a mind emptying experience and on the way back home, repeat positive affirmations. Pulled me out of alot of funks.

 

Guess What...........I need to do this again.

 

Can you walk and listen to your music????

 

Hugs

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Nadia

I work freelance, so I get new job offers all the time... I have been steadily saying no to make time to heal, and had not had a new offer since before I went on vacation (at least not one I was tempted to take). Huge source of anxiety for me.

 

In any case, re. the music... I think I overdid it. In the morning I had rote music going over and over in my head in a really disturbing way.. I need to be careful with sensory overload!

 

But I still think it was worth it because it helped me get through the moment last night.

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Addax

I have found music to be very soothing at times.  Sometimes New Age instrumental music, meditative music, certain artists like Enya, can be very relaxing for me.  I'm guessing that's why such music is often played during yoga or massage.  Listening to classical music when I'm writing has the effect of, not only relaxing me, but helping me to focus.

 

I thought I would post some information about music as a potential self-care tool...

 

Effects of Relaxing Music on Salivary Cortisol After Psychological Stress

Khalfa, S., Dalla A Bella, S., Roy, M., Peretz, I, & Lupien, S. (2003). Effects of relaxing music on salivary cortisol after psychological stress.  Annals New York Academy of Sciences, 999, 374-376.

The psychological stressor [used in this study] provoked a strong emotion that was revealed by a sharp increase in cortisol levels within 15 minutes. The concentration of cortisol decreased more rapidly in the saliva of the subjects exposed to music than in the group recovering from stress in silence, suggesting that relaxing music after a stressor can act by decreasing the poststress response of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis.  This result replicates previous findings (Kirschbaum & Hellhammer, 1993; 1994), indicating that relaxing music is more effective than silence in decreasing cortisol levels after stress induction.

 

Music Improves dopaminergic Neurotransmission: Demonstration Based on the Effect of Music on Blood Pressure Regulation

Sutoo, D., & Akiyama, K. (2004). Music improves dopaminergic neurotransmission: demonstration based on the effect of music on blood pressure regulation. Braine Research, 1016, 255-262.

In this study, systolic blood pressure in [rats] was significantly reduced along with decreased behavioral activity

during and after exposure to Mozart’s music.”

The mechanism by which music modifies brain function is not clear. Clinical findings indicate that music reduces blood pressure in various patients. We investigated the effect of music on blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). Previous studies indicated that calcium increases brain dopamine (DA) synthesis through a calmodulin (CaM)-dependent system. Increased DA levels reduce blood pressure in SHR. In this study, we examined the effects of music on this pathway. Systolic blood pressure in SHR was reduced by exposure to Mozart’s music (K.205), and the effect vanished when this pathway was inhibited. Exposure to music also significantly increased serum calcium levels and neostriatal DA levels. These results suggest that music leads to increased calcium/CaM-dependent DA synthesis in the brain, thus causing a reduction in blood pressure. Music might regulate and/or affect various brain functions through dopaminergic neurotransmission, and might therefore be effective for rectification of symptoms in various diseases that involve DA dysfunction.

 

Effects of Music on Anxiety of Women Awaiting Breast Cancer Biopsy

Haun, M., & Mainous, R. (2001). Effects of music on anxiety of women awaiting breast cancer biopsy. Behavioral Medicine, 127-132.

Abstract

The authors investigated the effect of music on the state anxiety of a sample of 20 patients awaiting breast biopsy at a suburban medical facility. The patients were assigned alternately to either the control or experimental group. The individuals in the experimental group were given a 20-minute music-based intervention in a preoperative holding area, whereas the patients in the control group received the customary preoperative care. Clinicians measured blood pressure, heart rate, and respiration in both groups of patients, and the participants completed the State portion of the self-administered State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). After the patients completed the 20 minutes of music or of preoperative care without music, clinicians again measured the participants' vital signs and the patients completed the STAI. The authors' findings indicated that the posttest state anxiety and respiratory rates of the patients in the experimental group were significantly lower than those of the patients in the control group.

 

 

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Jemima

Thanks for the post, Addax.  I think this would be helpful for lots of people.  For myself, I've always had super-acute hearing and music of any kind would have driven me up the wall in withdrawal.  Even now, I keep my house mostly quiet except for the occasional NPR broadcast or TV show.  But to each his own.  Most people seem to find music soothing.

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Addax

I can see how music might be difficult for some during withdrawal, particularly when hypersensitivity to sound is an issue. The background sound of talk radio, like NPR (love NPR!) or TV can be can be comforting as well.

 

Myself, like most people I think, tend to gravitate toward music that mirrors or matches how I'm feeling. Feeling blue/sad my music choice may reflect that, and music that seems contrary to how I'm feeling feels uncomfortable in a way. As if it creates a cognitive dissonance. While the dissonance can be annoying, I was thinking that given music's ability to elicit emotion on some level, perhaps listening to upbeat (aka "happy" songs) when feeling sad might be beneficial. It doesn't seem entirely different from the idea of listening to massage/meditation music when I'm feeling anxious. Getting past the initial discomfort of the inconsistency between the present feeling and the music might be a bit of a challenge, as would pushing past the thought of, "I really don't want to listen to that right now."

 

I think of it as that sound of a needle being taken abruptly off of a record (kinda dating myself with that one, eh?):

 

Feeling depressed, having depressed thoughts... (((Screechy sound!)))... New song/different feeling.

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Altostrata

See an account of soft music calming hypervigilance to improve sleep here

 

 

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kirby
On 5/29/2014 at 6:23 AM, Addax said:

I can see how music might be difficult for some during withdrawal, particularly when hypersensitivity to sound is an issue. The background sound of talk radio, like NPR (love NPR!) or TV can be can be comforting as well.

 

Myself, like most people I think, tend to gravitate toward music that mirrors or matches how I'm feeling. Feeling blue/sad my music choice may reflect that, and music that seems contrary to how I'm feeling feels uncomfortable in a way. As if it creates a cognitive dissonance. While the dissonance can be annoying, I was thinking that given music's ability to elicit emotion on some level, perhaps listening to upbeat (aka "happy" songs) when feeling sad might be beneficial. It doesn't seem entirely different from the idea of listening to massage/meditation music when I'm feeling anxious. Getting past the initial discomfort of the inconsistency between the present feeling and the music might be a bit of a challenge, as would pushing past the thought of, "I really don't want to listen to that right now."

 

I think of it as that sound of a needle being taken abruptly off of a record (kinda dating myself with that one, eh?):

 

Feeling depressed, having depressed thoughts... (((Screechy sound!)))... New song/different feeling.

Hey that is a good way of putting it. Maybe I listen to the music that reflects what I feel inside. Now I can listen to music with a new perspective and maybe learn something about myself that way!

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Altostrata

Bumping to point out the benefits of very soft music for sleep. 

 

An endless loop of meditation or trance music at a volume just high enough for you to hear while you're going to sleep can help you relax.

 

Following the music to quiet your mind is a very effective way to stop anxious thoughts that might keep you awake or, if you tend to wake in the middle of the night, keep you from relaxing back into sleep.

 

If your nervous system is in a hypersensitive state and jerking you awake when you're sleeping too deeply, hearing the music can keep it from over-reacting. Even if you're sleeping and not aware of the music, your ears are still hearing it. This reassures a hypervigilant nervous system from waking you up because it's afraid you're losing consciousness.

 

White noise or a fan can do the same, but that type of sound does not offer the meditation guidance if you should wake up.

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JackieDecides

I hope this works for you, music starts at 26 seconds in.

 

https://youtu.be/ZcZcDHRGyOs?t=26

 

it is a scene from the Andy Griffith show "man in a hurry" where they sing Church in the Wild Wood. 

works for me. 

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Orangeblossom77

I have recently discovered binaural beats and think find it helpful. It makes me quite emotional.

They played it at my yoga class at the end. It's very calming. 

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17309374

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hayduke

Substrata (or anything really) from Biosphere is a household fave for chillage here.  Can be a little on the darker side at times but I don't mind that.

 

Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works I is always great for relaxing, especially with company.

 

I'm a big fan of Soma FM's Drone Zone stream both at bedtime on a sleep timer and as a very gentle alarm clock.

 

Eno's original Music for Airports is still remarkably calming, too.

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hayduke

A quick bump - I felt like sharing that I've found listening to pretty much all the Cocteau Twins albums back to back is really helping with some of the bumps lately.  Ethereal and sweet.

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getofflex

Spotify has sleep music playlists that are 10 hours long.  The music is very relaxing and soothing.  I signed up for Spotify premium, so no ad interruptions to wake me up.  I'm going to try and hook up to my playlist all night and see if that doesn't help the insomnia.  

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getofflex

Well I tried listening to relaxing sleep music.  It sort of worked the first night, but was a disaster last night.  I had my power strip on the dresser next to me, to which was attached to two chargers to charge my phone and iPad.  I was listening to the music via Spotify through corded earbuds attached to the iPad.  (I don't know that cordless earbuds would hold a charge throughout the night, plus they are sort of bulky and would be uncomfortable as I sleep on my side and they would press into my ear)  In the middle of the night, the power strip fell off the dresser, and took with it the chargers and devices.  I was wide awake by now, had to turn on the light and straighten the whole mess out.   It took hours to go back to sleep.  My husband is in bed with me too, which is why I listen through the ear buds.  I may try sleeping in my guest bedroom, and just play the music out loud without ear buds.  

 

Perhaps I just need to accept that my sleep is going to be really messed up for a while, until my CNS sorts itself out.  Sometimes trying to find solutions to our symptoms just creates more stress and aggravation.  

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