Are you stressed out? Do you find it hard to stay away from the doctor? Are you struggling with cancer? Do you find it hard to relax? Drumming has been found to have a variety of therapeutic applications that may be able to address these questions. (See previous article for more on these)
A recent study from japan recorded the body's physiological response by looking for changes in mood as well as changes in the blood.
Tension/Anxiety, depression/dejection, anger/hostility, fatigue/inertia, and confusion/bewilderment were all measured before and after a drumming session. All were shown to lower within both the younger (below 65 years old) and older groups (above 65 years old).
As far as the biological parameters that were measured from the blood, the following changes were reported: Both noradrenaline and dopamine levels increased in both groups (some antidepressant medication stimulates noradrenaline, ADHD medication stimulates dopamine); white blood cell counts, neutrophils, lymphocytes, T cells and B Cells; all increased in both groups showing an increase in the activity of the immune system.
A similar study was conducted by Barry Bittman, MD. He measured increase of Natural Killer (one of the methods the body uses to combat cancer and viral illnesses) and Lymphokine-Activated Killer cell activity. This correlates to a strengthening of the body's natural immune response. This also illustrates a direct connection between the external senses and the natural immune system.
Stress is the leading cause of physiological and psychological disease. Many of us are unable to find time in our busy lives to experience even a taste of quality relaxation. Even when we lie in bed with our loved ones, our mind has a tendency to race, complaining about an angry boss or useless coworker, worrying about the presentation or board meeting of the following day, wondering if our children will find happiness and success in this world that is continually growing with chaos. Thus, even relaxing activities are no longer relaxing.
Drumming is one method that can reverse the effects of stress. Keep an eye out for future posts drumming groups in Huntsville. A group on Saturdays is currently on hiatus, and the Sunday community drum circle is currently looking for an indoor location for the winter. Stay tuned, as more opportunities to drum are just around the corner.