The Human Response to Music
Do you feel a sense of happiness and pleasure when listening to your favorite genre of music? Have you ever gotten chills during your favorite song? Would you prefer to listen to music over doing…pretty much anything else? You might say you have a “music addiction,” and you could actually be right. Many recent studies show that there are, in fact, a few connections between the functions that occur when we listen to music and when we take drugs.
As you most likely know, music can release emotions in humans that other forms of entertainment may not be able to. We can connect and relate to music in a way that feels unique, and there may be a few reasons for that. We don’t just feel it emotionally, we feel it physically, too. From chills on the arm to hairs standing up on the back of the neck, a variety of physical responses can be triggered when you’re listening to a song. And of course, singing music has its own effects. For some people, singing unleashes something in them that they can’t explain. This is all because of the magic of music, and maybe a dash of something extra.
What Are the Similarities Between Drugs & Music?
- Music and drugs both create pleasure by acting on the brain’s opioid system.
- Singing can release endorphins, which many drugs do as well.
- Many drugs, like prescriptions, can dull pain. Music has also been shown to provide a sense of relief in stressful or painful situations like surgeries.
Discovering Dopamine: How It Affects You
- Have sex
- Do drugs
- Listen to music