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Could Christmas Caroling Boost Mental Health?

Science shows that singing together improves mental health.

By:  |  December 21, 2020  |    391 Words
christmas carol sing GettyImages-1237033170

(Photo by Creative Touch Imaging Ltd./NurPhoto via Getty Images)

‘Tis the season for Christmas caroling at the top of our lungs with loved ones. Not only do Christmas carols get us in the holiday spirit, scientists have evidence that group singing improves mental health.

According to a study from the University of East Anglia in England, Christmas caroling can improve mental health. In the experiment, researchers followed 120 people in the Sing Your Heart Out (SYHO) project for six months. The group was started to help community bonding, especially for those who have suffered with mental health problems.

Participants attended free workshops each week and took part in evaluations with the scientists. The test found that the singing improved psychological well-being and recovery.

choir sing GettyImages-1071082848

(Photo by Creative Touch Imaging Ltd./NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Benefits of Group Singing

The study highlighted that SYHO reduced signs of anxiety and depression. Many called the project a “lifesaver.” Everyone who took part showed improvements in their mental health afterward.

In an interview with Neuroscience News, lead researcher Tom Shakespeare explained what he thinks is the main reason for the results:

“There’s very little pressure because the participants are not rehearsing towards a performance. It’s very inclusive and it’s just for fun.”

Shakespeare added that the SYHO format may be better than group therapy since attendees don’t have to discuss their problems with others. Instead, the program encourages socializing, teamwork, and support – not to mention the joy of singing favorite tunes.

Mental Health in America

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(Photo by Alexander RyuminTASS via Getty Images)

These conclusions may be of great value to Americans.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), nearly one in five American adults experience a mental health issue each year. The NIH calculates that more than one in five children suffers from a “seriously debilitating” mental condition at some point in life. The most common among adults were anxiety syndromes. For children it was attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

The social interactions and sense of teamwork in the SYHO project offer a positive way of coping with life challenges and a way to communicate with others. The results from East Anglia encourage everyone to try Christmas caroling this holiday season. No matter what your vocal talent, LNGenZ wishes readers a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

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