Opioids are now widely prescribed to treat acute or chronic pain. But so far, there is little evidence that such drugs help relieve long-term chronic pain. It was also known in 2020 that opioids can be addictive.
Scientists around the world are now researching another way to help people get rid of pain. This is listening to music.
In 1960, a team of dentists in Massachusetts discovered that sound and music could actually relieve pain. Specialists turned on the music during the operations and found that it helped patients relax. Noise also helps to suppress pain, and some don’t even need local anesthesia or nitrous oxide to reduce pain intensity.
Also, more recently in China, scientists discovered exactly which neural mechanisms are associated with the reduction in pain. True, so far these experiments have been carried out on mice. Experts believe that pain decreases as the auditory cortex becomes a receiver and processor of sound and the thalamus receives and transmits sensory signals.
During the experiment, mice with inflamed paws played various compositions with 50 dB. Among them was a classical piece, an unpleasant musical arrangement, and white noise. All three options turned out to reduce pain, in this case the main factor was the volume of the music.
When the experts analyzed the activity in the auditory cortex, they realized that quiet sounds can block the connection between the thalamus and the auditory cortex. Therefore, the processing of pain signals in the thalamus was not so active, that is, the pain decreased.
News cannot be equated with a doctor’s prescription. Consult an expert before making a decision.