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Music as a Value-Driven Approach to Treatment Reflections on creating a music therapy program for individuals with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). In a recent episode of the Canadian Music Therapy Podcast, Canadian music therapist and registered psychotherapist, Jill Hedican, shares reflections on her experience developing a music therapy program specifically designed for individuals with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto. Hedican describes the unique multi-disciplinary work she
Published: January 26, 2024
Regaining Connections and Restoring Perceptions with Music Therapy A look into the use of music therapy in the treatment of Prolonged Disorders of Consciousness PDOC What is the role of music therapy in the treatment of Prolonged Disorders of Consciousness (PDOC)? According to music therapists from the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability in the United Kingdom who work with patients with PDOC, the role of music therapy is both multi-faceted and individualized to the client's needs when working with patients with PDOC. While describing their music therapy
Published: January 26, 2024
Peace for the Present and a Piece for the Future Music therapy to support wellbeing and create legacy projects in end-of-life care. “It makes you feel happy,” is how one patient describes his experience participating in music therapy at Carilion Clinic Hospice in Virginia, USA. At the Carilion Clinic, as in other settings where music therapists provide services to individuals facing end-of-life, music therapy provides patients and their loved ones with a sense of connection and joy that is often hard to find in their final days. Ma
Published: January 26, 2024
“Every Session Was Easier Than the One Before” Exploring emotions and social connection in group music therapy for individuals with eating disorders. For individuals with eating disorders, a primary symptom is difficulty with emotion regulation. Can music therapy help improve emotion regulation in individuals with eating disorders? This is a question Canadian music therapists and researchers sought to answer in their study, “The Impact of Group Music Therapy for Individuals with Eating Disorders.” In this study, 21 individuals
Published: January 26, 2024
Managing Trauma as a Music Therapist A Canadian music therapist’s reflection on how to cope with personal trauma while working as a music therapist “Most people will experience a trauma of some kind at some point in their lives” states Canadian music therapist Heidi Flynn. No one is immune to experiencing trauma, including music therapists. But how does a music therapist work safely and effectively with their clients while trying to cope with their own trauma? This question serves as the basis for Flynn's presentation
Published: January 26, 2024
Music as a Tool: Using Music Therapy for Treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Insights from a case study on music therapy for an individual with complex post-traumatic stress disorder   What do you turn to when you are burdened by your trauma but talking seems “pointless”? For Ali, a psychiatric hospital patient living with complex post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the answer is music. Through having the freedom to improvise, create his own music, and express himself through music, Ali could share his feelings and story of his relational trauma
Published: January 26, 2024
Rebuilding Resilience: Music Therapy for Refugees Key takeaways from recent research into the benefits of music therapy for refugees  In the article “How Music Therapy Can Help Rebuild the Lives of Refugees,” music therapist, Elizabeth Coombes reflects on the value of music therapy as a form of psychosocial support for refugees recovering from the trauma associated with fleeing their homeland as refugees. Based on her research working with refugees from Pakistan, Syria, Albania, and Egypt, she shares the emotional, mental, and
Published: January 26, 2024
Music Therapy for Children with Selective Mutism A research report on the process of music therapy as an alternative non-pharmacological treatment for children with selective mutism Though selective mutism has a low prevalence, it can be debilitating for children and contribute to poor mental health outcomes for years to come. Common forms of treatment include Behaviour and Speech Therapy, as well as pharmacological interventions. Currently, clinicians and researchers are exploring music therapy as another form of treatment for selecti
Published: October 23, 2023
Soothing, Sucking, and Songs Exploring growth in music therapy for infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Units in Canada and new research on music therapy as care for infants and their families For infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Grand River Hospital (GRH) in Kitchener, Ontario, change is in the air; they can hear it. Certified Music Therapist (MTA) Tyler Reidy, recently initiated a NICU music therapy program at the GRH, making it the third NICU music therapy program in Ontario. Reidy works wi
Published: October 23, 2023
The Meaning of Music Therapy A music therapist’s reflections on the relevance of music therapy as an essential service in Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic For many, the COVID-19 pandemic was a time for reflection as individuals, workforces, and society. It is through these reflections and active responses we grow as people, workplaces, and society. In a recently published article for the Canadian Journal of Music Therapy, Certified Music Therapist (MTA) Taylor Kurta, exemplifies the value of reflection as she o
Published: October 23, 2023
Authenticity as Music Professionals Examining overlaps and intersections in the practice of authenticity among music therapists and other music professionals How do you experience authenticity as a professional? This was one of the questions researchers asked a music therapist, music educator, and music performer in their study, “The Experience of Authenticity Across Three Music Disciplines; Music Therapy, Music Teaching and Music Performance.” Recognizing that the interpersonal dimension of authenticity is central to
Published: October 23, 2023
Spotlight on Music Therapy and Cancer On February 4th, 2023, individuals across the globe will join to commemorate World Cancer Day (https://www.worldcancerday.org/) to spread awareness and increase support for individuals suffering from cancer. As this day of recognition approaches, we take time in this issue to shine a spotlight on current research in music therapy and clinical stories of music therapy practice in caring for individuals with cancer. The Research Highlighting recent research findings and reviews summariz
Published: January 27, 2023
Music Therapists and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: Why We Are Integrating Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion into All Aspects of CAMT by the CAMT EDI Committee The Canadian Association of Music Therapists (CAMT) has a proud history of incorporating positive social developments into our processes and practices. In harmony with this tradition, CAMT is moving forward with an agenda of embracing the core values of equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI).  What does this mean?   CAMT is reviewing and updating our policies and processes to reflect these values, such as equanimity, justice, and community,
Published: January 4, 2023
The Gift of Music Therapy How musician and popstar Shawn Mendes is using his success to bring the gift of music therapy to others “I wonder what it’s like,” a lyric from Shawn Mendes’ hit song Wonder, is likely a query of many young children staying in the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) in Toronto, Ontario who are curious about music therapy. Thanks to Mendes, now more children will get to find out just what music therapy is like. Mendes has donated $1 million to the hospital, launching the “Wond
Published: November 15, 2022
The More we Come Together… Reviewing “Addressing issues of mental health in schools through the arts: Teachers and music therapists working together” as a music therapist and teacher For many years, music has been incorporated into classroom learning in various capacities. More recently, music therapy has played an increasingly important role in fostering social, emotional, and academic skills among school children. But what would the impact be on student mental health if teachers and music therapists came tog
Published: November 15, 2022
Language Matters Addressing the use of systemic language in music therapy practice in Canada As an allied health profession, music therapy in Canada has predominantly embraced the language and views towards individuals and health that are well-established within Western healthcare. A consequence of this relationship is the adoption of Euro-centric and ableist perspectives that become apparent in music therapy literature, research, and practice. Canadian music therapists Amy Clements-Cortés and Joyce Jin
Published: November 15, 2022
Collaboration is Key Exploring music therapy research and music therapy practice and why they need to work together For Kyurim Kang, postdoctoral research fellow at the Johns Hopkins Center for Music and Medicine, music therapy research is her passion. She is driven by a desire to understand the scientific basis for the effectiveness of music therapy. In this blog post, Kang shares with readers some of the foundational research on how music activates the brain. She highlights the connection between resear
Published: November 15, 2022
Focusing: An Internal Knowing Sarah Bell, MA, MTA, RCT-C Focusing is a type of self-awareness discovered and developed by psychotherapist and philosopher, Eugene Gendlin. His explorations on the subject began in the 1950’s when Gendlin was researching at the University of Chicago as a student of Carl Rogers. Gendlin and his team of researchers were interested in the effectiveness of therapy. They asked questions like: How do we know therapy is working or not? How does it make a difference in people’s lives? He fo
Published: November 2, 2022
Music Therapy in the Middle East A conversation with a music therapist, psychotherapist, and advocate on practicing music therapy in the Kingdom of Bahrain In the early 2000s, no one in the Kingdom of Bahrain had heard of music therapy. Then along came Aksana Kavaliova-Moussi, a Belarus-born music therapist, trained in Canada, who changed this narrative. As the first music therapist in Bahrain, she spent ten years building up a music therapy practice from scratch. From small beginnings with local schools to eventually e
Published: September 20, 2022
Stories from Slovakia An account of the current landscape and future directions for music therapy practice in the European nation of Slovakia Jana Halmo, music therapist, doctoral student, and researcher, is passionate about the history of music therapy in Central and Eastern Europe. This passion is evident in her well-researched and written account of music therapy in Slovakia. In her article, Halmo begins by chronicling the origins and development of music therapy practice in Slovakia, noting key leaders an
Published: September 20, 2022