What is Music Therapy?


Music therapy is an established psychological clinical intervention, delivered by HCPC registered music therapists to help people affected by injury, illness, trauma or disability through supporting their psychological, emotional, cognitive, physical, communicative and social needs.
(British Association of Music Therapy 2016).

Why should I use it?

Music plays an important role in our everyday lives. It can be exciting or calming, joyful or poignant. It can stir memories and powerfully resonate with our feelings, helping us to express them and to communicate with others.

Music therapy uses these qualities and the musical components of rhythm, melody and tonality to provide a way of relating within a therapeutic relationship. Music therapy is not about learning to play an instrument but being able to use instruments as a means of expression.

In music therapy, people work with a wide range of easy to use instruments and their voices to create a musical languagewhich reflects how they feel; this enables them to build connections with their inner selves and with others around them. Music therapists support the client’s communications with improvised or composed instrumental music and voice, either sung or spoken.

Is it right for my family?

You would initially attend an individual assessment session with the music therapist, who would then decide with you whether the therapy would continue. After this assessment, you would be offered a block of six weekly music therapy sessions, which can be extended to 12 if necessary.

When working with adopted children it is often helpful for a therapist to work with the parent and child together. Creative therapists working at the English company CATCH-point (Creative Attachment Therapy for Children in foster and adoptive families), consider parents to be part of the therapeutic team, which fits comfortably with the attachment focus of TESSA and the work of our creative therapists. Of course, children may also attend for therapy without parents. When they do, the music therapist will feed back to parents about their child’s progress every third or fourth session. The feedback will include only what the child is ready and comfortable to share. Music therapy also works well with groups.