Sound Healing for Chronic Back Pain – Worth a try?

Everyone’s seen those popular ads about painkillers on television, portraying characters unable to function properly as members of the society owing to their aches. Unfortunately, those ads are not mere exaggerations. Any sort of pain can be extremely disturbing to one’s normal functioning and can disrupt one’s life. And in this hectic, fast paced world, chronic back pain has become extremely common.

What is Chronic Back Pain

Back pain is technically defined as physical disturbance in the back or spine. The intensity of this disturbance can range anywhere from mild to fatal. Chronic back pain is simply any sort of discomfort in the back on spine that has persisted for a longer period of time. The back or spine form the important base of the structure of the body and hence, any disturbance caused in the area deserve proper attention in terms of treatment. At its worst, back pain can cause severe disabilities, paralysis or even lead to death.

Back pains can be caused by certain diseases as a symptom or side-effect. It may be brought into force by an accident or be the result of overworking, wrong posture, unsuitable sleeping position, unsupervised working out or lifting heavy weights.

While a painkiller is enough to treat mild pains, a doctor’s advice is recommended for severe pain. Treatments consist of physical therapy, laser therapy, massage, and surgery, in serious cases. A new form of treatment that has emerged in the past few days is sound healing.

What is Sound Healing

Sound healing therapy is a process of using musical elements and instruments to encourage improvement in the emotional, physical and mental health of a patient. It involves procedures such as meditation, playing an instrument, singing and massaging to the tune of music. Sound healing aims to rejuvenate the mental aspects of a person’s pain and by attending to that, work out a cure. It has different types:

  1. Vibroacoustic therapy which uses audible sound vibrations to reduce stress
  2. Guided meditation which encompasses people meditating to music according to instructions
  3. Neurologic music therapy which entails a certified professional to analyze a patient’s needs and history in order to be able to create music for post-treatment rehab
  4. Bonny method which combines music and imagery in order to improve psychological needs
  5. Singing bowl therapy, a Tibetan technique used to relax the mind

Is Sound Healing effective for Back Pain

Numerous medical studies and experts have confirmed that back pain is not 100% physical. By subjecting patients of backache to different tunes of music, ranging from crass to soothing, these studies confirmed that patients reported higher levels of pain at the crass tunes. What’s interesting to note is that there was no change in the pressure applied to the location of pain or any injury. This implies that the patients also perceive the levels of their pain in accordance with the music being played.

The results of these studies prove that back pain can be reduced using sound therapy. Another study conducted had similar results, with patients of shoulder pain and back pain being subjected to 12 weeks of sound-related therapy. The patients showed reduced levels of pain. From this perspective, it seems that sound healing therapy can help back pain.

Detractors point, and substantially so, to the fact that the pain levels in patients subjected to these studies were not high enough or persistent enough to be chronic. However, chronic back pain does not necessitate high levels of pain to be classified as chronic – merely a longer period of pain. Moreover, it is often that doctors are unable to register the cause of chronic back pain and hence, small to severe douses of pain persist in patients. In these cases, sound therapy could help in tackling pain levels.


In conclusion, patients of chronic back pain are recommended to consult with doctors, and upon their prescription, try sound healing therapy as a means to reduce their pain.




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