UI Hospitals and Clinics

Music Therapy

Music therapy uses music to help patients of all ages deal with physical, social, emotional, cognitive or spiritual needs.

Three board-certified music therapists work to enhance the quality of life for all patients. Individual and group services are tailored to the unique needs of all patients.

Music therapy services include:

  • Singing a lullaby or favorite song to build the bond between parent and infant
  • Using active music play to normalize the hospital for young children
  • Writing songs to express feelings about illness and hospitalization
  • Teaching harmonica to promote deep breathing and pulmonary function
  • Playing soothing music to promote decreased heart and respiratory rates
  • Teaching music relaxation techniques to decrease pain and anxiety
  • Using familiar songs to provide comfort and support at end of life

Individual music therapy services in adult medical areas of the hospital are provided by referral to patients with extended or repeated hospital stays, lack of social support, and/or accompanying fear, anxiety, or depression.

Music therapy may:

  • Increase coping skills
  • Increase relaxation and stress management skills
  • Decrease anxiety and pain perception
  • Decrease cognitive distortions
  • Increase appropriate socialization skills
  • Improve decision-making skills
  • Provide distraction and normalization of environment
  • Provide an emotional and creative outlet
  • Improve anger management skills
  • Increase/improve awareness of body image
  • Provide comfort and spiritual support
  • Provide opportunities for reminiscence and life review

Weekly group music therapy services are available to patients on inpatient psychiatric units and in partial hospitalization. Individual music therapy services are provided by staff or patient referral. Music therapy goals are dependent on patient diagnoses and population.

Learn more about our music therapy internship.