anxiety in relationships

Can Music Relieve Anxiety in Relationships?

We all know about the negative effects that anxiety can have on our health, both mentally and physically. Unfortunately, anxiety can also impact your relationships in a negative way. Anxiety in relationships can cause negative feelings like panic, overwhelm, tension, and general uneasiness. Understandably, this can take a significant toll on your relationship if not addressed.

But there’s good news! A growing number of researchers are starting to use music in clinical settings as an analgesic to anxiety. At the very least, it takes the patient’s mind off of the negative feelings, and now scientists are trying to determine whether or not it actually reduces the anxiety sensation.

How Anxiety in Relationships Can Have a Negative Impact

We know that anxiety in relationships isn’t healthy, but here we’ll get into the details of how its negative impact can be seen.

Anxiety breaks down trust and connection. Because anxiety tends to increase your fear or worry, it can make you less aware of your needs in any moment. This can also extend to making you less aware of your partner’s needs. Obviously, when you lose touch with your partner’s or your own leads, this can lead to a disconnect within the relationship. 

Why does this happen? When you’re busy being anxious about what might happen or what could happen, it’s difficult to focus on what’s actually happening. This may also make your partner feel that you aren’t present within your relationship, or that there’s a barrier between you two.

Another negative impact of anxiety on relationships is panic and procrastination. Anxiety can make it difficult for a person to express their feelings or needs. This can make it difficult for them to set boundaries or ask for attention or space when it’s needed. When dealing with anxiety, you may also try to postpone experiencing anxiety by putting off dealing with your needs within your relationship. This is usually due to fear of causing an argument or other negative event. Without expressing your needs or feelings, anxiety can quickly become overwhelming and your emotions may eventually spiral out of control, leading to panic. This panic can then lead to defensiveness as well, making it difficult to communicate with your partner at all.

Fortunately, a study from the University of Utah is attempting to determine whether music can help sufferers deal with their anxiety.

anxiety in relationships

University of Utah Study

In a study at the University of Utah, through the study of pupil dilation and brain activity, scientists discovered that as patients became more focused on music, they experience greater relief from physical pain. The biggest effect was seen on those who were anxious about what they were experiencing physically. Other studies have had similar findings, demonstrating that those that were engaged in “music therapy” required less morphine for their pain than those that were not.

Ultimately, more research is needed to see if the effect of music can significantly alter the levels of pain and reduce anxiety, or if it is more of a helpful distraction.

Get Couples Counseling in Orange County

If you’re dealing with anxiety in relationships, taking the step to begin couples counseling can be intimidating. However, it’s important that you don’t let your fear stop you from doing what’s best for you and your relationship.

Jennifer De Francisco, MPA, MSW, LCSW, offers couples counseling in Orange County, CA for couples at any stage in their relationship. Her approach provides a safe environment to open and honestly share thoughts and emotions. Through developing a positive, therapeutic relationship, you and your partner can interpret what is going on, both in your life and in the session, creating a better awareness within your relationship.

Contact Jennifer De Francisco by calling (949) 251-8787 or make an appointment online.

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