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Music Therapy Services

Music therapy services at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center improves lives by promoting health and healing for the whole person through music. Since ancient times, music has been used to soothe emperors, kings, children, and even animals.

What is Music Therapy?

The American Music Therapy Association​ describes music therapy as the evidence-based use of music to accomplish personalized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program. It helps people cope or relax through music.

Music Therapy is an established health profession that uses music to address a person’s physical, emotional, cognitive or social needs. After assessing the strengths and needs of each client, the qualified music therapist provides the appropriate treatment, including creating, singing, moving to, and/or listening to music.

Benefits of Music Therapy

Music therapy can:

  • Decrease anxiety
  • Reduce feelings of pain and discomfort
  • Improve mood
  • Relax muscle tension
  • Lower blood pressure and reduce heart rate
  • Improve breathing (respiration)
  • Reduce stress

Insurance Coverage for Music Therapy

Insurance companies generally do not cover music therapy. But JamesCare for Life music therapy is a free service to patients of The James.

Find Music Therapy at The Ohio State University

Location Music Therapist Appointment Telephone​

JamesCare for Life

Nationwide Children's Hospital​

​​​614-293-6428 (JamesCare for Life)


Music Therapy FAQs

  1. What is music therapy?
    ANSWER: Music therapy uses music to help people reach physical, emotional and social health goals. In a typical music therapy session patients may listen or move to music, sing, play instruments, write music or analyze song lyrics.

  2. Who can benefit from music therapy?
    ANSWER: Everyone! People of all ages and abilities love it and often respond to it. Music therapy can help people with:
    • Mental health
    • Developmental and learning disabilities
    • Alzheimer's and other aging-related conditions
    • Substance abuse problems
    • Brain injuries
    • Physical disabilities
    • Acute and chronic pain, including mothers in labor

    Music therapy helps:

    • Relieve pain along with with anesthesia or pain medication
    • Lift a patients' mood
    • Promote movement for physical rehabilitation
    • Calm, sedate, or induce sleep
    • Reduce apprehension or fear
    • Ease muscle tension for relaxation, including the autonomic nervous system
  3. Is it safe?
    ANSWER: Music therapists are highly trained professionals who are closely attuned to patients’ and families’ needs. Music therapy is safe. Even those with sensitive ears can benefit from music therapy.

  4. Will my insurance pay for music therapy?
    ANSWER: No, but you will not be billed either. JamesCare for Life music therapy is a free service to patients of The James.​​​​​​​​​​​