A study published in the December Journal of Pain suggests pain patients who listen to music experience more relief  than non-listeners. The biggest effect was on the participants who were initially the most anxious. Study subjects tolerated the pain of shock administered to their hands better when they were encouraged to engage in the songs and to identify certain notes and tones. A Swedish study from 2009 reported similarly encouraging findings, with children who were given ‘music therapy” after minor surgery requiring smaller amounts of morphine. More research is needed, but it is worth a try to determine whether the effect of music on pain reduction is significant.

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