Study into benefits of singing proves positive impact on health

August 17, 2012, Canterbury Christ Church University

A pioneering research project to measure the value of singing for older people has revealed a consistently higher measure of health for those involved in community singing programmes.

The findings have also revealed singing groups for older people are cost-effective as a strategy.

In the world’s first randomised controlled trial into the benefits of community singing, conducted by the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health at Canterbury Christ Church University, the two year research project assessed the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness for older people taking part in singing groups and the impact it has on their physical and .

Professor Stephen Clift, Director of Research at the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health, said: “Our research has not only cemented previous studies that pointed to an increase in health benefits from community singing programmes, but also demonstrated that singing programmes are a cost-effective method of health promotion against NHS measures for this group of people.

“The design of the study has enabled us to put a value on the results which could ultimately result in substantial cost savings for the NHS and local authority adult services.”

Dr John Rodriguez, Assistant Director of Public Health, NHS Kent and Medway, said: “I’m delighted to see such world-class research in this field helping to provide evidence that singing programmes present a viable additional means to promoting the mental health of .”

Working with two sample groups of 240 volunteers over 60 years old, where one group took part in weekly singing sessions over three months and the other didn’t, the research revealed an increase in the mental health component score on a validated health measure amongst the group of singers. It also revealed significantly reduced anxiety and depression scores on a separate widely used NHS measure amongst the singing group.

The results also pointed towards an improvement in quality of life scores, on a measure used to assess the cost-effectiveness of health interventions, and recognised by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE).

The project was funded by an award of £250,000 from the National Institute for Health Research’s “Research for Patient Benefit” programme and worked closely with third sector organisation Sing For Your Life to facilitate the groups.

The Centre for Health Services Studies at the University of Kent were also part of the research team, leading on trial design and data analysis.

Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health is part of Canterbury Christ Church University and is committed to researching the potential value of music, and other participative arts activities, in the promotion of wellbeing and health of individuals and communities.

Explore further: Mental health service users complete country's first peer broker training course

Related Stories

Mental health service users complete country's first peer broker training course

July 18, 2012
A group of 15 mental health service users have completed the country's first 'peer brokerage' training designed and led by mental health service users.

Two effective treatments for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome / Myalgic Encephalomyelitis also cost-effective

August 2, 2012
(Medical Xpress) -- Two treatments found previously to be the most effective for patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) have now been found to be the most cost-effective treatments according ...

Childhood intelligence linked to long-term sick leave

April 13, 2012
(Medical Xpress) -- Individuals with better cognitive function in childhood are less likely to end up on long-term sick leave in adult life, according to new research by the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College ...

'Weak evidence' to support exercise referrals

November 7, 2011
Research commissioned by the NIHR Health Technology Assessment programme and carried out by research teams from the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry (PCMD) and the Universities of Exeter (Sport and Health Sciences) ...

Recommended for you

Poor sleep triggers viral loneliness and social rejection

August 14, 2018
Poor sleep can literally kill your social life. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have found that sleep-deprived people feel lonelier and less inclined to engage with others, avoiding close contact in ...

Mixing energy drinks with alcohol could enhance the negative effects of binge drinking

August 14, 2018
A key ingredient of energy drinks could be exacerbating some of the negative effects of binge drinking according to a new study.

New study finds fake, low-quality medicines prevalent in the developing world

August 10, 2018
A new study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that substandard and falsified medicines, including medicines to treat malaria, are a serious problem in much of the world. In low- and middle-income ...

Insurance status tied to higher self-perceived poor/fair health

August 9, 2018
(HealthDay)—Underinsured and never insured adults are more likely than adequately insured adults to report poor/fair health and frequent mental distress (FMD), according to a study published online July 19 in the U.S. Centers ...

Giving kids plates with segments and pictures caused them to eat more vegetables

August 8, 2018
A pair of researchers at the University of Colorado has found that preschool kids ate more vegetables when presented with segmented plates with pictures of fruits and vegetables on them. In their paper published in JAMA Pediatrics, ...

Carbon dioxide levels on flight deck affect airline pilot performance

August 8, 2018
Commercial airline pilots were significantly better at performing advanced maneuvers in a flight simulator when carbon dioxide (CO2) levels on the flight deck (cockpit) were 700 parts per million (ppm) and 1500 ppm than when ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.