Music Therapy for Aphasia

Music Therapy for Aphasia

Music Therapy for Aphasia

You sure have heard of Speech Therapy for Aphasia! But what is music therapy for Aphasia? Let’s find out! Music Therapy for Aphasia has been present for years. So, this was started in 1970s by Estabrooks for aphasia.

However, it has gained traction recently.

Have you seen, how quickly you can memorize and sing a song? This is because of the right-side brain. Further, the connection between music and memory is innate in humans. It helps us to learn faster. Overall, science has stated, that this is due to some brain connections and pathways.

What is Music Therapy?

Music Therapy is an evidence-based clinical therapy. Further, it is useful in the treatment of many disorders. Goals are worked upon using music. The therapist uses music to treat a person. Sessions are based on music. Activities center around music. Furthermore, the therapy includes listening, playing, or composing music. However, special musical talents are not needed for music therapy.

Who benefits from music therapy?

Some disorders in which music therapy is beneficial and effective are:

  • Aphasia (Non-fluent type)
  • Alzheimer’s Disease and cognitive disorders
  • Autism and developmental disorders
  • Mental Health Illnesses
  • Trauma victims and many more.

Overall, music benefits all! Don’t we all feel better when we listen to music? I am sure we do!

Benefits of Music Therapy

Now, let’s read about some benefits of music therapy. There are many benefits. Some are listed here:

  • It promotes communication. Speech and language centers are active while we listen to music.
  • Enhances cognitive skills.
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Develops self-regulation.
  • Improves self-reflection
  • Increases motivation.
  • Finally, gives joy

Who can conduct music therapy?

A professional certified in music therapy is called a Music Therapist. In other words, a music therapist is licensed. Further, it can be conducted online, in hospitals, clinics, and at home. The cost per session depends on the music therapist.

Here is the video related to mental health

What is Music Therapy for Aphasia?

Music therapy has shown to be effective for Aphasia. It benefits persons with non-fluent aphasias. Non-fluent types of aphasia such as Broca’s, Global, and Transcotical aphasia. Persons with non-fluent aphasias have deficits in expression. So, trouble with speech sounds, words, and sentences. Furthermore, they have deficits in the expression of speech. Hence, music combined with language helps them. So as to strengthen the neural pathways. In turn, facilitate verbal speech.

Research evidence of music therapy for Aphasia

Now, let’s discuss what the research says. Further, here are some studies:

  1. A study conducted by Liu, Li et al in 2021revealed the below:
  • Music therapy can improve skills in aphasia. Such as functional speech, repetition, and naming.
  • However, music therapy did not improve language comprehension.
  1. Another study by Zhang, Yu et al in 2021 revealed:
  • Music therapy along with MIT is valuable.
  • It is effective in the non-fluent types of aphasias.
  • It aids the recovery of speech.

Overall, there are many studies.

How does music therapy help in speech?

Research is going on. To find out how music helps in speech recovery. Especially in non-fluent aphasias. Aphasia rehab focuses on the neuroplasticity of the brain. Specifically, the ability of the brain to re-wire and fix its paths. The healthy parts of the brain take up the function of the damaged parts. So, the best way to enhance this is by repetition. Singing enhances neuroplasticity. There are many theories. And research on the science behind this skill.

So, one theory says, music aids in memory. Music crosses the halves of the brain. It forms a neural path for language. Also, music is rich in repetitions and patterns. This aids in memory.

Also, one theory is music helps to practice repetition. By engaging the right side of the brain. This will help to carry over skills to the right side of the brain. In a stroke, mostly the left side is damaged. So, the right takes up the functions. This is due to the auto repairability of our brain. Isn’t it amazing!

Will music therapy benefit me?

Consult a Speech-Language Therapist (SLP). So, they will first test. Then counsel for the right approach. Some therapies advised are:

  • Speech-Language Therapy
  • Cognitive based therapies
  • Music therapy

The SLP may advise Melodic Intonation Therapy or Music Therapy. This depends upon the need.

So, music therapy takes time to show results. So, patience & practice are crucial. This will aid in positive results.

Some Tips:

  • Trus the process
  • Have faith in your therapist
  • Talk to your therapist
  • Discuss points that are hard to follow
  • Follow your therapist’s lead
  • Wait and be patient
  • Be positive
  • Be regular in therapy
  • Realize results take time
  • Do daily practice
  • Talk to people daily
  • Socialize with peers
  • Lastly, try singing songs

Here is a video on Tips for people with Aphasia for you


Please drop us a comment if you liked the article. So, hope you got some insights into Music Therapy for Aphasia.

If you wish to know more about Speech-Language Therapy, contact us!

Check out our other blogs!


Ayesha Anjum
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