Music as medicine?

Research into music as pain relief at Lowlands Festival 2023
People at a concert
People with headphones on

Medical-scientific research on music has boomed in recent years and many studies have now proven that music can reduce pain, anxiety and stress. But which music works best? That is the question ESHCC scientists Julian Schaap, Michaƫl Berghman and Femke Vandenberg and Erasmus MC scientists Emy van der Valk Bouman and Antonia Becker are trying to answer at Lowlands Festival 2023 this summer.

What is the influence of different musical genres on enduring a pain stimulus in visitors at Lowlands? And does the listener's music preference play a role in this? Through an experiment in which volunteers have to hold their hand in a tub of ice-cold water for as long as possible while listening to different types of music, the scientists set out to find the answer to this question.


Lowlands Science

This research is part of Lowlands Science, the programme in which universities, HBO institutes and research institutes conduct interesting research. Other investigations this year are "Dance your future!", "Jamming with plants" and "Operation head-bang".


Music as medicine

Dit onderzoek wordt uitgevoerd door arts-onderzoekers van de onderzoeksgroep Muziek als Medicijn (MAM) van het Erasmus MC en cultuursociologen van Rotterdam Popular Music Studies (RPMS) van Erasmus School of History Culture and Communication. Omdat zowel pijn als muziek verschillende dimensies hebben, versterkt deze combinatie van expertise uit de geneeskunde en de sociologie onze inzichten in de werkingsmechanismen van muziek als medicijn.

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