Continuing from last month, I have more points to share about how music can benefit our brains.

4. Music can significantly distract us while driving.

A study conducted on teenagers and young adults focused on how their driving was affected by music. They tested drivers that were listening to their music of choice, silence, or music that was deemed “safe” by researchers. Drivers preferred their own music but when listening to their own music, drove more aggressively! The music chosen by researchers proved to be more beneficial than no music at all. Seemingly unfamiliar and uninteresting music is best for safe driving.

5. Music training can significantly improve our motor and reasoning skills.

Learning a musical instrument is beneficial in more ways than we expect. One study showed that children who had three years or more musical instrument training performed better than those who did not learn an instrument in auditory discrimination abilities and fine motor skills. They also tested better on vocabulary and nonverbal reasoning skills involving comprehension and analyzing of visual information. An example of this would be identifying relationships, similarities and differences between shapes and patterns. These areas are removed from musical training as we imagine it so it’s fascinating to see how learning an instrument can help children develop such a wide variety of skills.

6. Classical music can improve visual attention.

Children are not the only ones who can improve from musical training or musical exposure. In one study, stroke patients demonstrated improved visual attention while listening to classical music! The researchers in the study then tried white noise and then silence just to compare the results.  They found a similar finding as to that of the drivers; silence resulted in the worst scores.