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Letters to the Editor

Music Therapy for the Treatment of Patients With COVID-19

Psychopathological Problems Intervention and Well-Being Improvement

Biondi Situmorang, Dominikus David SPd, MPd, MSi, CT, CPS, CBNLP

Author Information
Infectious Diseases in Clinical Practice: May 2021 - Volume 29 - Issue 3 - p e198
doi: 10.1097/IPC.0000000000000999
  • Free

To the Editor:

Nowadays, it is noted that patients affected by COVID-19 are increasing in various countries.1 It has resulted in many people experiencing multiple psychopathological problems, such as anxiety, fear, depression, and stress.2,3 This psychological problem also turns out to be experienced by COVID-19 patients when they have to be treated in a hospital or outpatient at home.4 Many of them experience low self-esteem, feel guilty, feel hopeless, and feel helpless.5 Psychologically, this can make their lives even more unhappy and will have an even more impact on their health because their immunity eventually decreases.6

According to Herbert and Cohen,7 a healthy body always starts with a healthy psyche. From the past until now, there have been many studies explaining that there is a simple and inexpensive therapy, namely, through music.8–12 Music has been shown to reduce anxiety, fear, depression, and stress.13 In addition, music has been shown to increase feelings of happiness and well-being.14

Based on this, practitioners in health (nurses, doctors, and counselors/psychologists in hospitals) should start using music as an alternative intervention to intervene in psychopathological problems and improve well-being. There are several things that can be done to help COVID-19 patients in this regard:

  1. Play sedative music in their room

Nurses, doctors, and counselors/psychologists at hospitals can play sedative music in the treatment rooms for COVID-19 patients to feel calmer and sleep well. In addition, sedative music is very useful for refreshing the body when patients wake up from sleep.

  • 2. Invite them to sing a song that they love

Nurses, doctors, and counselors/psychologists at the hospital can invite them to sing a song that they love. That is a form of active music therapy. In this way, patients can increase their happiness and well-being.

  • 3. Invite them to watch a music video

Nurses, doctors, and counselors/psychologists at hospitals or families can invite them to watch music videos through their gadgets. This activity can be done simultaneously for the second point, inviting them to sing the song they like.

These are tips that nurses, doctors, and counselors/psychologists at hospitals can do to intervene in psychopathological problems and improve the well-being of COVID-19 patients. Hopefully, this article can be an input for health professionals in helping COVID-19 patients around the world.

Dominikus David Biondi Situmorang, SPd, MPd, MSi, CT, CPS, CBNLP
Department of Guidance and Counseling
Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia
[email protected]

REFERENCES

1. WHO. Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) weekly epidemiological update and weekly operational update, 2020. Available at: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/situation-reports. Accessed November 25, 2020.
2. Lee SA, Crunk EA. Fear and psychopathology during the COVID-19 crisis: neuroticism, hypochondriasis, reassurance-seeking, and coronaphobia as fear factors. Omega (Westport). 2020;30222820949350. [Epub ahead of print].
3. Situmorang DDB. The issues of transference and countertransference in tele-psychotherapy during COVID-19 outbreak. Asian J Psychiatr. 2020;54:102427.
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6. Ramezani M, Simani L, Karimialavijeh E, et al. The role of anxiety and cortisol in outcomes of patients with COVID-19. Basic Clin Neurosci. 2020;11(2):179–184.
7. Herbert TB, Cohen S. Stress and immunity in humans: a meta-analytic review. Psychosom Med. 1993;55:364–379.
8. Davis WB, Gfeller KE, Thaut MH. An Introduction to Music Therapy: Theory and Practice. Silver Spring, MD: American Music Therapy Association; 2008.
9. Kamioka H, Tsutani K, Yamada M, et al. Effectiveness of music therapy: a summary of systematic reviews based on randomized controlled trials of music interventions. Patient Prefer Adherence. 2014;8:727–754.
10. Situmorang DDB. Music therapy for the treatment of patients with addictions in COVID-19 pandemic. Addict Disord Treat. 2020;19(4):252.
11. Situmorang DDB. Music therapy as a nonpharmacological intervention for pregnant women during COVID-19 outbreak. Addict Disord Treat. 2020. [Epub ahead of print].
12. Situmorang DDB. Online/cyber counseling services in the COVID-19 outbreak: are they really new?J Pastoral Care Counsel. 2020;74(3):166–174.
13. de Witte M, Pinho ADS, Stams GJ, et al. Music therapy for stress reduction: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Health Psychol Rev. 2020;1–26.
14. Dileo C. Effects of music and music therapy on medical patients: a meta-analysis of the research and implications for the future. J Soc Integr Oncol. 2006;4(2):67–70.
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