The effects of music therapy on stress, anxiety, and depression in pregnant women were studied by researchers at the National Tainan Institute of Nursing in Taiwan.

First, the details.

  • 236 pregnant women were randomly assigned to music therapy or a control.
    • The music therapy included 2 weeks of music exposure.
    • The control group received only general prenatal care.
  • Psychological health was assessed using the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (S-STAI) and Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS).

And, the results.

  • The music therapy group showed significant decreases in perceived stress, anxiety, and depression after delivery.
  • The control group only showed a significant decrease in perceived stress, which was less than in the music group.

The bottom line?
The authors concluded, “This controlled trial provides preliminary evidence that 2-week music therapy during pregnancy provides quantifiable psychological benefits.”

It’s cheap and apparently a useful complementary treatment technique.

11/16/08 17:41 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.