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How music lessons help kids with autism

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Music lessons for kids with autism

Research has found that taking music lessons increases brain fibre connections in children with autism and ADHD, according to new research.

“When a child receives musical instruction, their brains are asked to complete certain tasks. These tasks involve hearing, motor, cognition, emotion and social skills, which seem to activate these different brain areas” – Dr Dies-Suarez

Musical minds

“It’s been known that musical instruction benefits children with these disorders,” said Pilar Dies-Suarez, M.D., chief radiologist at the Hospital Infantil de México Federico Gómez in Mexico City, “but this study has given us a better understanding of exactly how the brain changes and where these new fibre connections are occurring.”

Researchers found that, after nine months of musical training, children showed an increase in fibre length in different areas of the brain. Studies have previously been linked with autism spectrum and ADHD.

“Experiencing music at an early age can contribute to better brain development, optimising the creation and establishment of neural networks, and stimulating the existing brain tracts,” said Dr. Dies-Suarez.

The researchers believe that the results could aid in creating targeted interventions in treating disorders like autism and ADHD.

“When a child receives musical instruction, their brains are asked to complete certain tasks,” Dr. Dies-Suarez said. “These tasks involve hearing, motor, cognition, emotion and social skills, which seem to activate these different brain areas. These results may have occurred because of the need to create more connections between the two hemispheres of the brain.”

Taking music lessons increases brain fibre connections in children and may be useful in treating autism and ADHD, according to a new study …