Today’s society is in the midst of an anxiety epidemic. Unfortunately this feeling of panic, fear, worry, and dread holds quite a strong grip on a very large population. In fact, according to Anxiety Centre, approximately 30 percent of the adult population aged 18-54, are affected by anxiety disorders in the USA alone every year.
It has become the number one mental health issue in North America and it has been estimated that people who suffer from an anxiety disorder are 3-5 times more likely to visit a doctor and 6 times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders than those who don’t have it.
But, how did this come to pass?
Psychologists believe the rise of technology, overly-protective parenting and “exam-factory” can contribute to the development of anxiety. This is due to the fact that people tend to become insecure from all these things. Most values are shattered and judgment comes out of every corner. There’s no doubt that living a life like this can make anyone anxious.
Another factor that plays a role in the rise of anxiety is the overwhelming amount of choice people have. When you’re pressured into being the best in a society where your every move is judged, it can have a negative effect on your self-esteem.
The classic treatment for treating anxiety as well as the biggest money maker is pharmaceutical drugs or cognitive therapy. Almost 65 % of North Americans are taking prescription medications daily, while 43 % take mood-altering prescription regularly. In addition, there are those who look for a holistic approach to anxiety, often turning to yoga, massage, meditation and other relaxation techniques.
However, did you know there could also be some ordinary and unusual things that may alleviate your symptoms? According to a study by neuroscientists, there’s a song which can have a big influence on your levels of anxiety.
The study involved participants who tried to solve different puzzles as quickly as possible, which inevitably triggered a certain degree of stress, while they were connected to sensors. At the same time, they listened to a number of songs while researchers recorded their brain activity and their physiological states that included blood pressure, heart rate, and rate of breathing.
What they found was that the song Weightless by the Marconi Union resulted in a dramatic 65 % reduction in participants’ overall anxiety and 35 % reduction in their usual psychological resting states.
Interestingly enough, this song was actually created to do so. The group, Marconi Union, collaborated with sound therapists by carefully arranging rhythms, harmonies and bass lines in order to help slow the listener’s heart rate and blood pressure, and lower stress hormones like cortisol.
The song was so effective that many of the female participants became drowsy. This is why lead researcher Dr. David Lewis-Hodgson of Mindlab International advises against listening to it when driving.
If you’re still not convinced, experience it for yourself here: