1. Listening to music can change your emotions Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Giphy / Via giphy.com According to a study done by Yuan-Pin Lin, Jeng-Ren Duann, Jyh-Horng Chen and Tzyy-Ping Jung, music may be able to cause emotional changes in your brain. While having volunteers listen to different emotionally charged songs, they looked at the electrical signals of each person's brain and found that emotional change was linked to the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), which is involved in emotional processing. Electrical activity also seemed to increase during more happy and excited songs as opposed to sad and calm songs. They also found differences in how each person processes emotion, suggesting some people may process emotions using different brain circuits. 2. Your heart rate can change depending on whether you find a song pleasant or not Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Giphy / Via giphy.com Researchers measured heart rate as well as electrical signals in the brain and found that their heart rates increased when listening to pleasant songs and decreased when listening to unpleasant songs. The heart rates decreased with feelings of unpleasantness and decreased even more if the unpleasant feelings were strong. Yet the heart rates did not increase more if the pleasant feelings were strong. 3. You may think of fast songs as happy, but your brain may not show it Pacific Retirement Services, Inc. / Via glennstrumpetnotes.com A group of people were asked to rate four songs on a scale from happy to sad and their brains were scanned in an fMRI machine. Speed (whether they were fast or slow) and mode (whether they were major or minor) defined these songs.People generally rated the fast songs as the happiest ones, suggesting that speed had a greater influence on them. Yet looking at the fMRI scans, the mode had a greater influence on the brain while speed had no apparent effect. 4. Your brain might be asymmetrical when it comes to music perception Inspire Day by Day / Via inspiredaybyday.com While having the electrical signals in their brains measured, a group of people listened to four songs that caused feelings of fear, joy, happiness, and sadness. Researchers found that when listening to songs that caused positive emotions, the left side of the brain was activated and when listening to songs that caused negative emotions, the right side of the brain was activated.They also found that the more intense the emotions were, the more the front part of the brain was activated. There was also significantly less activation in the left side of the brain than the right side when listening to high intensity songs. 5. Certain regions of your brain may be specifically involved with certain emotions Brain Connection / Via brainconnection.brainhq.com Scans of people's brains while listening to six songs and rating them on a scale showed that certain regions of the brain were more active during feelings of unpleasantness and other regions of the brain were more active during feelings of pleasantness. Other emotions that were not affected by music were not seen in these particular regions. The amygdala, mainly involved with fear and other strong emotions, seemed to be connected to these regions, suggesting the involvement of this area in emotional processing. 6. Listening to happy music can stimulate the reward centers in your brain Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Giphy / Via giphy.com fMRI scans of people listening to happy, sad and neutral music in this study show that happy music may activate the ventral and dorsal striatum, areas involved with reward experience. The same was not found for sad or neutral music. 7. Feeling emotion during music and assessing the emotion of a song are two different things Pinterest / Via pinterest.com A bunch of musicians were asked to listen to songs and rate both the emotions they thought were represented and the emotions they personally felt. They tended to assess the music as more happy or more sad than what they actually felt.fMRI scans were also taken of them while listening to music. These scans showed that the felt emotion task was associated with the precuneus, a region involved with self-representation and judgements of one's own feelings. This region was not active in scans of the perceived emotion task. 8. There may be different processes in recognizing emotions in music and recognizing familiarity of a song All Things Web / Via allthingsweb.co.uk A single case study of IR, a woman who suffered from bilateral cerebral damage, found that she could fairly normally classify songs as happy or sad, but could not classify them as familiar or unfamiliar. This defect only happened with music. Along with studies of neurologically intact people, research suggests that people can make judgements about the emotion of a song without knowing whether the song is familiar or not. This suggests that there are different brain circuits involved with recognizing emotion and recognizing familiarity. 9. Listening to a song and remembering that song may involve the same emotional processes Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Giphy / Via giphy.com Musicians were asked to listen to famous songs and continuously rate the emotions presented in the songs. Then they were asked to imagine the songs while still rating the emotions of the songs. This showed that people could both track the emotion of a song and extract the emotion from memory to imagine the song. This also suggests that the emotional information was able to be remembered at the same time the music could be remembered, which is faster than other kinds of memory retrieval. When imaging songs, you could probably feel the same emotions as if you were listening to the song itself. 10. Irregular chords may cause activation in the amygdala Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Tap to play or pause GIF Giphy / Via giphy.com When listening to regular and irregular chords in chord sequences, fMRI scans were done and researchers found that these irregular chords may cause activation in the amygdala, which is critical in emotion processing. This suggests that music has an effect on some of the most important regions of the brain involving emotions. Dysfunction of the amygdala has also been linked to depression and anxiety, which suggests that there is scientific support for music therapy.