Music Therapy for Teenagers

Teenage years are a time of growth and change, which can be challenging but also offers real opportunities for development and learning. Music is a medium that teens tend to gravitate to naturally, so it can be very effective. Music therapy provides a unique way to work with teens that draws on the many healing aspects of music.


Making the most of life!

Alistair and Meta had the joy of working with this smiling young man, and his fellow 6th form students last year. He has epilepsy and having a group he could be part of, when he was well enough, was very positive for him. His group allowed the CSAs and students to have fun together and enjoy being creative in shared music making. We used improvisation and known songs- supported by playing instruments, singing and dancing. Our aim was to facilitate an interactive session which valued everyone’s contributions. When this student joined us he certainly participated with energy and enthusiasm. The benefits for the group were improved mood, greater confidence, greater concentration and co-ordination.

How can Music Therapy benefit Teens?

Music is a creative art form that allow emotions to be expressed and shared. In music therapy teens can gain self-understanding and learn better ways to cope with their lives.

  • Music therapy uses music and songs as therapeutic tools to help teens heal by encouraging self-expression and self-awareness

  • Living with Harmony music therapists are trained to help a teen deal with troubling problems or behaviours through the use of music

Music is used in various ways. Improvisation when teens may want to compose their own songs; listening to the lyrics of specific songs or talking about how certain music changes the way they feel. Some teens find dance and movement freeing and pleasurable.

  • Teens often discover that the words in popular songs express their own feelings and experiences that they cannot express themselves

  • Teens tend to gravitate to music that describes what they are feeling and what is important to them

Music Therapy and songs for the Troubled Teen

  • Singing along with the lyrics of a song can provide a healthy release of painful or difficult emotions

  • Soothing music can help an anxious teen relax

  • Discussing the violent lyrics of a song can help an angry teen express their rage

Music Therapy and Moods

  • Connecting with the mood of a teen builds a rapport with the therapist

  • Co-creating active music can help a depressed teen to improve their energy

  • Composing new words to a song can help reflect on difficult feelings

  • Creating music with others gives purpose and meaning and builds healthy social networks