Dancing and Singing to Balance the Nervous System
In the amazing world of neuroscience, researchers are exploring how music and dance affect our brain and can regulate our nervous system. These activities activate the reward centers in our brains, which release dopamine. This neurotransmitter is responsible for feelings of pleasure or reward. Neuroscientists believe that participating in music and dance can also trigger endorphins and other feel-good hormones by relieving stress, anger, fear, and anxiety — all of which create stress as a response to unpleasant situations. In this blog post we’ll explore more about how music and dance can balance your nervous system.
How Music Can Help Balance Your Nervous System
The neural pathways in your brain that control the music areas of your brain develop in infancy. These pathways are the foundation for your auditory skills and musical potential. The music areas of the brain also connect to the limbic system, where emotions are processed. Brainwave research provides evidence that music can help calm the nervous system and reduce stress by lowering the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). The SNS is responsible for the “fight or flight” response when we are stressed. When the SNS is activated, blood is shunted away from the gastrointestinal tract, liver, kidneys, and other organs, and sent to the muscles, heart, and lungs to help us survive a dangerous situation.
The Benefits of Dancing to Balance Your Nervous System
Studies show that people who regularly dance experience a reduction in anxiety, depression, and stress. Dancing also affects the sympathetic nervous system (SNS), but in a different way than music. When you dance, your SNS kicks into high gear to pump blood to your muscles so you can move and stay upright. When you finish dancing, the SNS activity slows down, returning your body to a state of rest, while your brain remains active. Dance activates the motor cortex of your brain, which increases endorphin and dopamine production. Dancing is also a social activity that can help you connect with others and reduce stress.
Singing Exercises to Balance the Nervous System
Research shows that singing activates the same areas in the brain that are affected by meditation. People who sing regularly have reduced risk of stroke and can maintain cognitive function in old age. Because your vocal cords and lungs are affected by changes in your nervous system, singing can help to balance your nervous system. Singing can help with anxiety related to public speaking, performing in front of an audience, or speaking with authority in a business setting. It can help with social anxiety, performance anxiety, and stress related to work.
The sounds of music and singing are powerful healing tools that can help to reduce stress and improve mood. Music therapy has been used for balancing our nervous system and to deal with a wide range of issues including anxiety, depression, stress, and pain management. Dancing and singing can help you indeed regain your balance by reducing your stress and anxiety levels. These activities can help you recover from a stressful situation and help you achieve a feeling of calm.
To learn more about the topic, psychotherapeutic yoga, movement, meditation or Ayurveda, you have different possibilities:
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