Every Brain Needs Music | Teen Ink

Every Brain Needs Music

April 27, 2016
By gquackenboss BRONZE, North Hanover, New Jersey
gquackenboss BRONZE, North Hanover, New Jersey
1 article 0 photos 3 comments

Music is everywhere.  Wherever we go, there is music.  Music is a part of daily life to almost every single person on the planet.  Personally, I would go crazy in a world without music.

Everyone shares this common ground of music, but a drastically fewer amount of people actually understand it and know how to make it.  Studies on the brain reacting to music have proven that the brain does benefit from listening to music, but newer studies actually show what the brain of a musician looks like. 

After conducting tests on musician’s brains, there is one thing that is definitely noticeable: they are different.  Playing a musical instrument is one of the hardest activities a human can do. 
Motor systems in the brain control gross and fine movements that the person needs to play an instrument.  The sound is processed by the auditory circuitry.  Sensory signals from the fingers, arms, and hands are sent to the brain for processing. 

A musician’s Corpus Callosum, which connects the brain’s two hemispheres, is noticeably larger than a person who does not play music.  Additionally, musicians with perfect pitch have an asymmetrical enlargement in the auditory cortex, enabling them to recognize pitches on the spot. 

Practicing and playing music also enhances neurogenesis, improving learning and memory.  Practicing the piano is proven to be an effective way to enhance the structure of white matter. 

Playing an instrument exercises every single part of the brain - at once. 

These benefits of playing music have been proven to only be unique to music - studies on athletes have not shown any of the advanced brain activity that musicians have.  Yes, many athletes are smart, but their brains aren’t wired to function in the unique way that musicians’ brains are. 

After all, that “starving artist” may just wind up to be the smartest person you know.  

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