Almost all of us have sung in our lives, whether when we went to school, at an important and formal ceremony, or just for ourselves.
Is singing a thing that is good for our health and it is better to do it more?
Research shows that harmonizing with group singing and singing improves mood and the immune system, and lowers blood pressure and chronic pain. Some doctors in the UK prescribe singing for some patients. But why is singing good for the body and soul?
Ecstasy with singing
One of the remarkable effects of singing is the mood and good mood that we feel at the same time. Singing stimulates the release of “happiness hormones” such as dopamine and endorphins, and naturally creates a state of trance and euphoria, says Dr. Michael Mosley, a well-known BBC science presenter.
Research shows that singing has similar effects to cannabis use. Endocannabinoids have recently been found to be a group of chemicals that occur naturally in the human body and cause behaviors and reactions such as cannabis consumption. In a study of women over the age of 50, they found that singing in a choir suddenly raised the level of endocannabinoids in their blood by ٪ 42%.
Research also shows that oxytocin, a social communication hormone, is increased. Perhaps this is a good explanation of how quickly group singing melts the ice. The natural ecstasy created by singing helps relieve pain. Many people with chronic pain say they need less painkillers by singing.
Singing and the immune system
One of the most interesting recent findings is that even an hour of group singing improves the immune system. A 2004 study compared the effects of singing with listening to music and found that those who sang had higher levels of immunoglobulin, a type of antibody that acts at the front line of the immune system.
Dr. Daisy Fancourt, who has conducted several studies on singing and its effects on the immune system, has found that just a few sessions of group singing can reduce chronic infections and inflammation. Reducing inflammation improves the immune system’s ability to respond to infections and diseases. Our immune system can use more resources and power to fight attackers effectively. “But it’s not just that, we know that inflammation is also related to our mental health, for example in depression,” says Dr. Fancourt.
Singing and mental health
Dr. Fancourt’s research shows how singing helps people with mental health. A study of women with postpartum depression found that women who participated in singing programs reduced their depressive symptoms by up to 40% within a few weeks.
Singing has profound and varied physical and psychological effects. It gives us self-confidence, we recover from loneliness and it has a positive effect on our level of anxiety.
“In addition, lowering blood pressure and muscle tension and heart rate and activating the reward pathway in the brain should be considered,” says Dr. Fancourt. “Singing even improves lung function in people with lung disease and even improves their physical condition,” he said.
Some doctors in the UK refer their patients to choirs as a social therapy activity for the treatment of neurological and other chronic illnesses. “There are clinical therapy groups in the UK that collectively organize choirs and other art programs where people with chronic pain and illness can be referred, and the results are amazing,” says Dr Fancourt.
How much do you have to sing to feel good?
Research shows that even five minutes of singing works. If you can do this at a set time each day, it will fit well into your daily routine. If you want to increase its benefits, why not join a face-to-face or virtual choir? Social interaction helps you develop this habit and keep it going.
Singing has nothing to do with it, it has no cost, but it has a quality, from better physical condition, better lung function and blood pressure to refreshing and reducing infection and inflammation. Even if everyone keeps telling you that you should stop doing this, remember that singing is not a shame, it’s something that everyone can do.