How music can potentially boost mental health

Samarah Weyand, Staff Writer

Ever since the first pandemic lockdown of 2020, lingering side effects have surfaced among teens while depression rates have increased. However, one of the many therapeutic coping mechanisms students and staff can turn to involves music.

Music is attributed to reducing stress, pain, and depression/anxiety.

Choir teacher, Jessica Carey, said that since COVID hit, she has seen a drastic change in students’ drive to be creative and sing. She also says that students are using music to cope with their mental health and trauma.

“I think seeing kids back in the classroom after being online for so long [is] rejuvenating.  I’ve seen kids find their love of school and choir come back because they are in person and they’re singing together.  It feels like there’s almost a sense of normalcy again,” Carey said

Carey says students seek healthy coping mechanisms and music is one of them. She says that music is therapeutic and helps with student trauma.

“To me music has always been a way to express emotions without necessarily verbalizing everything that is running through my head. We can use music for our own enjoyment to help us navigate through some of those complex emotions,” Carey said.

Athletes use music to motivate themselves while working out, which is proven to provide higher levels of power, endurance, and strength in performance.

Emiliano Venegas, senior in cross country, said music helps motivate him for his practices.

“Before a meet or anything, I always need music to hype me up and [get me] ready to do my best,” Venegas said.

Venegas talks about how music affects him personally.

“I think music can be therapeutic at times depending on what they’re talking about so I think when you listen to it you can relate to some parts of it,” Venegas said.

Dominic Scalise, a choir member and self-proclaimed musician, said that making and listening to music helps him express himself.

“Sometimes when I’m listening to it, I can unlock certain feelings that are inside of myself that I didn’t really know that I had. Making [music] allows me to put what I’m thinking, how I’m feeling out there into something and being able to look at it, it’s just expression,” Scalise said.

He goes on to say that his mood with music really depends on the tempo of the song. He compares fast songs to exercise because he sees this as a stress reliever.

“There are only a couple songs that I hear that can truly make me feel really sad or really a certain emotion. There’s some songs that really standout, and I feel like it’s good to be able to listen to a sad song and be able to get all of those sad emotions out and stressors out,” said Scalise.