How Learning an Instrument Improves Your Brain Function

words Al Woods

In recent studies, it has shown that musical training can change the structure and improve the function of your brain. The changes can help with reducing anxiety, stimulate mental growth, and improved long term memory for older individuals and can enhance brain development at an early age.

As individuals get older, reaction times can get slower, and music can increase reaction time and help older individuals. Learning an instrument helps with integrating a variety of senses due to heightened auditory and audio-tactile, which scientists believe that music does help improve brain functions because learning an instrument is a more productive and sophisticated experience, instead of playing brain games. When learning an instrument, a person’s vision, hearing, and touch are all used, which helps with mastering subtle movements.

Having the stimulation of multiple senses will help enhance brain functions and can result in longer-lasting improvements for a person’s brain functions and health. Brains are one of the essential organs in a person’s body, as it controls everything.

One thing most people fear as they get older is cognitive decline, and this is why music and learning how to play an instrument can help with improving cognitive health.

Learning an Instrument

Playing Music and the Brain

Brain scans have helped scientists identify the difference between brain structures of musicians and non-musicians. The items most positively impacted is the corpus callosum. This collection of nerve fibers that bridges the two sides of your brain are responsible for communications between both parts of your mind.

Because playing music involves the use of multiple senses explains why the corpus callosum would be more extensive in musicians. Since there is a continued communication that enhances the longevity of your brain, studies show that the areas in the brain involving hearing, movement, and visual abilities are also more abundant in musicians. Research has shown that the age in which you start learning to play an instrument influences the changes the brain undergoes. Learning to play an instrument at a younger age influences changes in the structure and function of a person’s mind. Short-term period of learning to play instruments can provide benefits as well, such as preserved substantial processing of speech sounds, and increase elasticity to hearing age-related decline.

Learning to play an instrument expands the functional and structural aspects of a person’s brain in other ways as well.

Strengthen Bonds with Others

Music can help in creating and strengthening bonds with other people. For example, band members must maintain constant communication, cooperation, and coordinator to be successful. Whether bands play in the garage with friends, a school orchestra, or church 3group, the brain is stimulated and benefits from the interactions with people.

Enhance Memory and Reading Skills

Learning an instrument and playing music enhances your memory and reading skills because the cognitive neural mechanisms in the brain music and reading are related. Reading music sheet music helps these compartments work together and strengthens both.

Learn Instrument

Makes You Happy

Playing music can make you happy, which helps with depression and anxiety since when a brain is depressed, it functions poorly. Additionally, depression can add stress that increases inflammation in a person’s mind which can start early aging and cognitive decline. Reducing inflammation is critical to a person’s overall health. Research has shown that when people listen to music, it enhances their communication skills and makes them smile more.

Developing Multitasking Skills

Learning an instrument can help with developing multitasking skills because it forces you to process numerous senses at once, which helps with promoting your brain’s health and abilities. Learning an instrument helps a person learn to switch tasks more effectively and efficiently, for example, playing the piano, where both a person’s hands and feet are required, plus reading sheet music.  Eyes are reading, and ears are listening to make sure playing accurately, while the hands and feet concentrate on playing.

Boost in Energy

Learning an instrument and playing music increases a person’s blood flow to the brain, which can help with boosting energy.

Promote Dexterity

Music training and therapy have been successful in improving motor control in day to day activities of stroke patients because it encourages multiple brain structures to work together, which effectively gets the brain exercising.

Increases Listening Skills

Playing an instrument requires a person to listen carefully to the sounds. Learning an instrument increases your listening skills because you need to focus on hearing wrong notes to correct mistakes. Tuning an instrument requires careful listening to make sure your pitch is sharp or flat. Learning to play an instrument will help improve a person’s listening skills.

Strengthen Decision-Making

Playing music and learning instruments strengthens your brain’s decision-making skills, which covers tasks like processing and retaining information, controlling behavior, and problem-solving. The boost to someone’s decision making helps boost brain functioning.

Builds a Sense of Achievement

Learning to play an instrument and succeeding playing music gives you a tremendous sense of pride and builds a sense of achievement, especially if its something you’ve been struggling at for awhile. Finally, nailing down the notes and successfully playing your instrument boosts your feeling of accomplishment.

Increases Blood Flow

Learning an instrument and playing musical instruments has shown to increase blood flow in the brain. This increase in blood flow can boost energy and a person’s ability to fulfill logical tasks.

It’s Fun

An additional benefit of learning an instrument is that its fun. In the beginning, learning to play an instrument can be struggling, but all the benefits that playing music can produce far outweigh any struggles. Playing and learning an instrument can give a person a sense of achievement, expand social circles, and build confidence.

The Conclusion

Learning and playing an instrument increase productivity in your brain and strengthens the connections. Learning an instrument improves memory, helps boost energy, alleviates depression and stress, and can help increase multitasking. As you can see, the benefits of learning an instrument and playing music are measureless, no matter a person’s age. Learning an instrument improves brain functions, emotional intelligence, and strengthens analytical skills. There are many benefits for people old and young when they decide to learn an instrument and play music.


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