Assignment: Music Therapy For Children

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Running Head: Music Therapy for Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder 1

Music Therapy for Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder 2


Music therapy is a clinical and research-based use of music for interventions to accomplish therapeutic healing by a registered music therapist on a patient. The idea of music therapy is to enable patients, who are unable to talk, to use musical activities to express their emotions in songwriting, dancing, singing and playing the musical instruments. To administer music therapy, we require an approved therapist to assess the patients to determine their therapeutic needs. The therapists then provide a goal, schedule and times per week to visit the patient, performs the therapy as planned and evaluates the success of the therapy sessions at certain interval times. ASD is a combination of developmental disorders that affect the skills, behaviors, and levels of abilities in an individual. ASD affects both adults and children. The disorder can be detected after three years for children by their parents. In older children, the teachers or family doctors may detect such symptoms. The earlier the detection, the easier it will be to treat the disorder. For earlier treatment, it is paramount parents to be vigilante on the symptoms for ASD by consulting specialists in autism. The symptoms are in the behavioral symptoms and social interaction behaviors. ASD in children can be treated when caught earlier in developmental stages. Children display similar symptoms to ASD as adults with an addition of sensory problems, emotional difficulties, and uneven cognitive abilities. The methods of diagnosing to confirm ASD requires experts. Music therapy is one of the treatment methods that has proven to be successful in the treatment of children with ASD. Through the musical activities administered by musical therapists, music therapy has helped improve emotional responses, reduce anxiety in children, and improve communication skills of these children in their peer groups. Music therapy has shown that these children have superior abilities compared to their peers. Music therapy is, therefore, beneficial in the treatment of children with ASD and should be considered just like any other treatment.


Autism spectrum disorder ASD, Music therapy, and Systematic review.


My research focuses on the disciplines of Autism and spectrum disorder and music therapy for children. Autism spectrum disorder has been extensively involved with traditional music and music that is aligned with healing. Despite it having the positive impact on the patients, most music therapists have been focusing on the pragmatic use of music for the benefit of the patient, but rarely consider their healing relations practices to another indigenous healing method that are associated with music. The research will help us identify the ways and how to do the music therapy in children.

From the article of wheelers (2005) “Four studies assessing the impact of music therapy for children with ASD were known and analyzed the review. Our analysis of 4 studies shows that many studies had positive results, recommending that music therapy might be the best intervention for some children with ASD and for specific reasons. Despite the good result, some limitation has come out too which are has to be considered. (Wheeler et al 2005).


Research on music and healing in Music Therapy for Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorders.

The preview.

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder involving persistent difficulty in social communication, social interaction, and reputation of restricted behaviors; interests, or activities. This is according to American Psychiatric Association. The symptoms of ASD are noticed in early development and result in significant difficulty in social, occupational or daily functioning. These symptoms of ASD can vary, for instance, approximately between 25 to 61 % of the victim to ASD do not construct a functional speech. While others might construct. They are often used in stereotyped ways these are basing to (Prizant Schlosser, 1996) and (Wendt, 2008) articles. Furthermore, one may experience intellectual disabilities which are less than 50 (IQ< 50), these are evidenced in about 25% to 50% of ASD cases, but still, the good IQ has been identified to the victims of the disorder. It is from this that the wide range of treatment is initiated and investigated these is according to Green article (Green et al. 2006).

Restrictive/repetitive behaviors

These ASD behaviors may include repeating actions or behaviors in certain moments. The individual may have an overly focused interest in an activity such as a moving object. The individual may also have a lasting and interest in specific subjects and topics such as numbers, facts, or details in art.

Social communication/interaction behaviors

These ASD behaviors may include getting enraged by a slight change in a routine or even entering a new place with over stimulating changes in light. The individuals may make little or inconsistent eye contact with people in an enclosure. The individuals may rarely share objects of enjoyment with others. The individual may respond in a queer way when other show anger, affection or distress. The individual may talk about a favorite topic without noticing the disinterest in the group of listeners. The individual may fail or be slow to respond to someone calling their name to gain their attention. The Individual may have facial expressions, gestures, and movements that do not match what they say. The individual may use odd words, that may be out of place, or that have special meaning to those familiar with is a way of speech.

Aside from the symptoms of behaviors, ASD individuals are unique and special because of their strengths and abilities that may include having a gifted intellect. The CDC reports (2012) suggest that 46% of ASD children have above average intelligence. Individuals can learn most things in detail and remember this information for a long time. The individuals have a high visual and auditory ability to learn. The individuals excel in Math, Science, Music, or Art subjects.

Transition to the main context.

Music therapy is one most effective treatment device that has been used for children with ASD. According to Greens article (Green et al.2006) and Reschke article Reschke-Hernández, (2016), music therapy is “a systematic process of intervention where the therapist helps the client to promote health using musical experiences and relationships that develop through victims as dynamic forces of change”. Lately World Federation of Music Therapy (WFMT), defines music therapy as “the professional use of music and its elements as an intervention in medical, educational, and everyday environments with individuals, groups, families, or communities who seek to optimize their quality of life and improve their physical, social, communicative, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual health and wellbeing. Research, practice, education, and clinical training in music therapy are based on professional standards according to cultural, social, and political contexts”. (World Federation of Music Therapy, 2017). Also, Music therapy refers to the clinical and research-based use of music for interventions to accomplish therapeutic healing and relationship by a proven professional in the field of musical therapy program in a higher education system (“Definition and Quotes about Music Therapy”, 2017). The therapeutic relationship when using music addresses physical, emotional, mental, cognitive and social needs of a person.

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