Christmas Music and Your Mental Health: How to Make it Work For You

Christmas Music and Your Mental Health: How to Make it Work For You

The sounds of the season can make you feel wonderful or terrible, depending on the person. Here’s how to stay sane.

Christmas music: it’s already wafting through the stores and spilling out on the airwaves. Some may find it an uplifting part of a long November or December day but for others, it’s not all holly and chocolates.

Experts say whether or not listening to Christmas carols is good for you can depend on your associations with it.

In a report on NBC, Nicole Spector details how listening to the familiar tunes can be difficult for some.

Related: 3 Mental Health Apps to Help You Feel Better and Do More

If childhood wasn’t an entirely rosy time for you, songs like Jingle Bells, which were likely paint your holiday memories, could evoke pain and stress. The reward system in your brain that would normally trigger the release of good chemicals like dopamine, can connect with centers of pain instead.

And for those who didn’t start buying Christmas presents in August, the music can trigger feelings of stress. The countdown has begun, and there’s limited time left to be prepared for the big day.

What can you do to stay sane and happy? Practice daily relaxation through meditation, breathing and exercise. And get to finishing that shopping list.

For those who can’t stand listening to the tunes, buy some ear buds and have your own portable music with you to block out the carols. Participate in the season in a way that works for you.

Photo credits: janews/

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