5 Best Kept Secrets about Music Therapy



man announcing   March is officially Music Therapy Month in Colorado! We wanted to take a moment to shout out some of the best kept secrets about music therapy that really shouldn’t be secrets. We think they should be shouted from the rooftops. Even if you have been working with us for years, you may not know some of these best kept secrets!

1) Physicians can write orders for music therapy. Your doctor can write an script for music therapy, just like they do for physical therapy. In fact, you may want an order from your doctor in order to attempt reimbursement.

2) Your health care insurance may cover music therapy services. While music therapy may not be a listed benefit on your health insurance plan, it is probably not excluded. The American Medical Association has advised music therapists on what codes are most appropriate to bill for music therapy.

3) Music therapy may be more difficult for musicians. Musicians who experience a change in their health or independence may struggle to engage in music therapy because they will compare their current musical abilities to their abilities prior to their current struggles. It can be a very difficult and emotional thing to realize that you can’t do what you love to do in quite the same way or with the same level of expertise.

4) Music therapists and neuroscientists are in cahoots! There is increasing collaboration between neuroscientists and music therapists. Neuroscientists have been researching music and the brain for years, and they are excited to see their work translate outside of the lab to help people on a daily basis. This collaboration is taking place in many ways, including the Society for Music Perception and Cognition, the International Society for Clinical Neuromusicology, theAmerican Music Therapy Association, and the World Federation for NeuroRehabilitation.

5) Your music therapist may know more about neuroscience than some members of your treatment team. Music therapists complete a wide range of courses in their education. Did you know that you can get your undergraduate degree, master’s degree and/or PhD in music therapy? Most music therapists have at least been through anatomy and physiology courses. Some programs include high level neuroanatomy classes where students work with brains and spinal cords, and problem-solve clinical cases.