How Music Impacts Your Mood

(and the science behind it)


The flow of emotions that comes with music.

Indigo Graves, Staff Writer

Many people love listening to music. Your taste could range anywhere from rap, to alternative, to classical. And though music types differ, one thing stays the same: the way music directly affects us. More upbeat music can make you happier, and studies by the Positive Psychology Foundation show that in only two weeks of listening to such music, people’s moods improved exponentially. 

So how does music do it? The science behind how music changes your mentality is based on research on a neurotransmitter called dopamine–commonly called the “happy chemical.” Music, as something that appeals to the brain, triggers the release of dopamine, creating a peak burst of happiness that has a lasting effect on your mood that can remain even throughout the day. 

Not only can music improve or affect your mood, it can also be used as a form of therapy. Studies have shown that calming or happy music can help with symptoms of depression, anxiety, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and schizophrenia. Music can also help with physical pain. Today, many doctors have their patients listen to music they enjoy while healing from surgery. Patients explain that the music helps soothe them, and eases their pain.  Not only does music have a major positive impact, it also causes no unpleasant side effects. 

Recently, according to the BBC, even Spotify, one of the most popular music streaming apps today, is working on ways to personalize the songs that are played for a specific person based on their mood, where they are, what time of day it is, or what their common listening patterns are. 

I interviewed 26 people about music as a mood changer, and the resulting data showed that 98% believe that music improves or changes their mood. 46% said they listen to music every day. 

Today, we are surrounded by different tunes and beats, so next time you listen to music, think about how it makes you feel, and how that feeling can help you. 

When I’m sad, I listen to this playlist 🙂