Effects of music on behaviour and the cardiovascular system in animals and human beings

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.47513/mmd.v13i1.760

Abstract

Abstract

Background Music plays an important role during life. However, there is little known whether music of different styles can directly alter behavioural patterns in animals or cardiovascular parameters in humans.

Objective To study the potential effects of classical music (CL) and heavy metal (HM) in comparison to silence (S) on behavioural patterns or cardiovascular parameters blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR).

Method Behavioural patterns were examined in six German Large White pigs. More than 11.000 distinct singular behaviours were analyzed. Cortisol levels, heart rate and blood pressure were recorded in 60 healthy volunteers. In animals and in human beings an identical study protocol was used. In both groups, CL (Bach, Suite No. 3, BWV 1068), HM (Disturbed, Indestructible) S was applied. Sound exposure of CL, HM or the S period was 21 minutes. All data of the studied volunteers were compared to 60 healthy “control” (CO) participants who underwent an identical study protocol but without music application (S).

Results In animals, we clearly could demonstrate that CL leads to significantly more activity and attention of the pigs (e,g. playing ball) compared to HM or S (p<0.001). In contrast, HM was significantly more associated with unexpected, stress related behavioural patterns (excitation, trying to escape) compared to CL or S (p<0.001). In humans, systolic, diastolic BP (mm Hg) and HR (beats per min) decreased mostly when CL was played compared to HM or controls (p<0.001), prior to and after sound exposure.

Conclusions The results provide clear evidence for the potential of music styles to improve or deteriorate welfare in this farm animal species. It is obvious that CL (Bach) leads to both positive behavioural patterns in animals and decreased values of BP and HR. In HM or S we could not observe similar findings. Therefore, due to these experimental and clinical data, sound exposure with classical music has positive effects on cardiovascular parameters and will positively influence behavioural patterns in animals.

 

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2021-01-23

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