I have to admit even though I was aware that music therapy works miracles – particularly for people in recovery; I really didn’t know exactly how or why it has literally saved so many lives. That is until I sat in a music therapy session at the Cove Center for Recovery dual diagnosis drug and alcohol addiction treatment center. Now I am not only a firm believer, but I also understand the reason why so many people benefit from music in therapy.
Learn How and Why Music Therapy helps so many in Drug Rehab (below)
In the world of music therapy – connection is the currency of healing according to Michael Price, clinical director of the Cove Center for Recovery.
Price is convinced that music helps people connect with each other more quickly and it is the currency of connection from the soul to soul and from the spirit to the spirit which assists with the transfer of energy. Price is a fine authority as he has worked in music therapy with the likes of Aerosmith front-man Steven Tyler and Richie Supa – guitarist and song writer for the legendary rock group.
The Cove teaches it clients life-saving tools to recover from drug addiction, alcohol abuse, and mental behavioral issues by providing a state-of-the-art music therapy program in an effort to build up their client’s soul and to lift up their spirit when they are down. The Cove’s music therapy extends to Debonaire Recording Studio – a private, professional music studio – that’s client list includes the Seminole Hard Rock Casino and Hotel. Here it’s clients have access to the same equipment as music professionals and can actually learn how to produce music and take home their personal sound-track.
When people in recovery start to play music they begin to connect and begin the long journey towards recovery. The music therapy will also assist in a sustained recovery. Now without these skills people in recovery run a higher risk for relapse. This is precisely why the Cove has a robust music therapy program and emphasizes its healing capabilities in its treatment program .
So here at the Cove we do a creative expression group aka music therapy. In this group we talk about openness, willingness, sharing and letting out what is inside, which is a big part of healing and facilitating recovery. The first thing we do is break out into small groups to brain storm what each client wants to perform at our weekly Open Mic session. We will also practice once we decide what it is we want to present to the group.
Music therapy energizes their spirit and gets our clients to try new things. You can see they are singing for the first time, playing the drums for the first time, rapping for the first time, and for those who are not musically inclined or interested maybe writing a poem for the first time.
So when they are discharged they go to meetings like Narcotics Anonymous (NA) and Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), and are able to share much more easily. They are more open with sharing with others in their recovery support network.
Music therapy energizes their spirit and gets our clients to try new things
– Michael Price, Cove Center for Recovery Clinical Director
What is music therapy about?
Music therapy is often about using a therapy vehicle to draw out what is inside of a person in recovery that they need to get out in an effort to learn about themselves. So it is about self-awareness and letting other people see them out of their “comfort zone.”
“So if I am comfortable letting you see me singing a song in a group for the first time,” said Price. “The odds are that when I leave rehab and I am struggling and having cravings, I will be stronger and seek help.”
“But if I isolate myself and I don’t express what’s inside of me, then I won’t get help,” Price affirmed. “This is why I am encouraging them to play music – to learn how to express themselves.”
“If they are feeling kind of woozy or sad, I can play Nirvana and I can express how heartbroken they feel through the guitar,” Price said. “This is what is so great about music. I am expressing how I am and people see that and then I can expand on those feelings in individual and group therapy.”