Scientists have found that in addition to schizophrenic patients being given medical care, music, as a therapy, can bring about changes in their general sense of well being, mental state and social activities.
Since 1950s music had been used as a therapy for people with serious mental disorders but there were not enough evidence to support the validity of the procedure.
The researchers had looked into four studies to find out the effect of music therapy along with standard medical care administered to patients suffering from schizophrenia. The techniques used in the music therapy were musical improvisation, discussion of personal issues related to the musical process etc that required specially trained therapists. The sessions conducted ranged from 7 to 78 sessions. The patients were again evaluated 1 to 3 months after treatment.
The results showed that the patients who received music therapy did better in social functioning, emotional well being than those who received only standard medical care.
When added to standard care, music therapy helps people with schizophrenia improve their global state, mental state and social functioning. The Norwegian researchers said that the effectiveness of the music therapy were directly proportional to the number of sessions attended by the patients.