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What is music therapy?

Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.


Neurologic music therapy (NMT) is the therapeutic application of music to cognitive, sensory, and motor dysfunctions that come from human neurologic diseases. NMT treatment is based on stimulating music perception and production parts in the human brain, and the effects thereof on nonmusical and behavior functions.



Music Therapy is an allied health profession in which music is used within a therapeutic relationship to address physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of individuals. After assessing the strengths and needs of each client, the qualified music therapist provides the indicated treatment including creating, singing, moving to, and/or listening to music. Through musical involvement in the therapeutic context, clients’ abilities are strengthened and transferred to other areas of their lives. Music therapy also provides avenues for communication that can be helpful to those who find it difficult to express themselves in words. Research in music therapy supports its effectiveness in many areas such as: overall physical rehabilitation and facilitating movement, increasing people’s motivation to become engaged in their treatment, providing emotional support for clients and their families, and providing an outlet for expression of feelings (American Music Therapy Association, 2014).


“When we are unable to think or speak or move or be who we once were, we still have this music. It helps us express and communicate. It helps us feel good. It moves us, often deeply, always naturally”

– Billy Joel, 1993


World Federation of Music Therapy

The Academy of Neurologic Music Therapy

Music Therapy Tales

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