About DrAlice

Dr. Alice Cash is one of the world’s few clinical musicologists. Based in Louisville, Kentucky, USA, she brings to her work over 40 years of professional experience as a college professor, clinical therapist, solo and chamber music performer and composer. Since 1990, Dr. Cash has been in the field of Music Medicine and conducted clinical research at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, under the guidance of Dr. Joel Elkes, Dr. Leah Dickstein, and Dr. Rif El-Mallakh. Her clinical work at the University of Louisville lead to her career in music medicine. In addition to her work with the University of Louisville, Dr. Cash lead the development of using music a hospital setting at Baptist East Hospital, Louisvile, KY. She has founded 3 companies: Healing Music Enterprises, Surgical Serenity Solutions and Crescent Hill Counseling.
"Tune Your Life with Music!"

Reduce Pain and Anxiety During Surgery: A proven musical solution

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Patient receiving anesthesia before surgery

Having surgery causes anxiety in most people.  Just the thought of having surgery can induce feelings of helplessness and fear that are completely understandable.  Having surgery means that there is a problem, something is not right.  Even elective surgery, like cosmetic surgery, causes considerable anxiety.  Patients experiencing anxiety related to upcoming medical/dental procedures want to avoid chemicals and the risk of addiction or negative side-effects.  Some people are extremely sensitive to anesthesia.  Perhaps they’ve already had a negative reaction to anesthesia but have been informed that they must have surgery for very valid reasons.

Medical facilities want to help patients feel less anxious

How can physicians and medical facilities help patients feel less anxious and perhaps reduce the need for anxiety medication?

A great deal of research has shown that the right kind of music can reduce anxiety and pain perception. Also, when patients are provided this music, it increases patient satisfaction with the medical procedure. Patients report that when using this music, “it made all the difference!” As you can imagine, this is a great benefit to doctors and medical facilities as well.

Hospitals have used music therapists to help patients 1:1 but music therapy can be an expensive solution. Instead, it is possible to offer patients specially chosen therapeutic music to be listened to through headphones or earbuds. This provides an inexpensive and easily scalable option.

The legal problem with streaming music to patients

There’s a legal issue about streaming music to patients. Years ago, hospitals and other medical facilities could just stream Pandora or Spotify playlists.  As of January 1, 2019, medical facilities now must have a healthcare facility license and that costs money.  We have a solution for that.  Our solution provides licenses for our scientifically curated therapeutic music that can be legally streamed to patients and provide the desired results. Our proprietary music is available to download onto a smart device, either mobile phone or tablet.

Surgical Serenity Solutions has an app for that

Hospitals and other medical/dental facilities can license these playlists easily and use them legally with our Complete Hospital Kit which includes:

  • Bose bluetooth headphones
  • A mobile tablet loaded with all five surgical playlists
  • A one-year license for this music
  • Two bags of disposable earphone covers so that headphones can be reused between patients with a simple wipe-down

Press Play to view an animation of the Complete Hospital Kit.

 

 

Here’s how it works:

  1. Download the app for free
  2. Sample each playlist and choose the lists you’d like to license
  3. Go to our license request page

 

overs the concept and process of how to choose the ideal music for surgery has been a huge asset in establishing my credibility.  Our proprietary music have been used around the world.  To learn more, go to www.surgicalserenitysolutions.com/calm      Digital Products — For Medical Facilities — NEW.

If you’re an individual and want just one pair of  headphones, we still sell headphones to stream these playlists on our website .

 

Surgical Serenity Solutions, LLC has created a headphone  already programmed with the ideal music for surgery,  We received our final patent in October of 2008. U.S. Patent 7,431,689 B2.  If you are a medical device company and interested in licensing our patent, contact DrCash@SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Using Music to Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Relieve Insomnia

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Insomnia and music

Are YOU having trouble getting a good night’s sleep because of Covid-19 and all of the stress it has created for everyone?  One of the uses for our proprietary music has been insomnia.  We know it’s been used effectively for surgery, colonoscopies, and dental work, and insomnia is a logical extension.

Rhythmic entrainment is the phenomenon that our music is based on.  Our bodies and minds literally cannot help but entrain or synchronize with a rhythmic pulse, but when there is no rhythmic pulse in the environment, the body and mind can deteriorate into chaos.

Introducing a slow, steady pulse, in the context of a soothing genre of music that you like, can quickly, effortlessly and safely begin to slow down your heart-rate, breathing and your “monkey mind.”

A lady contacted me recently to say that she had not gotten a good night’s sleep since her husband passed away nearly a year ago.  She was still grieving her loss and literally could not sleep except for fitfully.  She wondered if our music through headphones might help?

Of course I replied that I thought there was a very good chance that our rhythmic entrainment music could help her and offered to deliver some of our pre-loaded headphones to her in person.  Here’s the message I got back from her the very next day:

“Oh Alice!  Your headphones with the beautiful music on them were a Godsend!  Last night, I got a good night’s sleep for the first time in almost a year.”

She was so relieved to sleep and have a peaceful night’s rest.  She has stayed in touch with me and reports that she keeps her headphones right beside her bed and streams our rhythmic entrainment playlists every night, choosing from the classical, jazz and New Age playlists.

Because we are complex beings, results will vary from night to night. Insomnia can strike for all kinds of reasons, but slow, simple, rhythmic music can definitely help to calm the mind and body very quickly and effectively.  Sleep medications can be quite addictive and sometimes people have very bad reactions to them.  Why not get one of these Serenity Solutions playlists right now?  Click HERE!  

To learn more about our playlists, go to www.SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com/calm.  Sleep well!

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By |September 3, 2020|Insomnia|0 Comments

The Neuro-chemistry of Music

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Dr Cash at AORN conferenceThe neuro-chemistry of music is endlessly fascinating to me!  People have loved music for thousands and thousands of years.  We know intuitively that music can cause us to feel a huge range of emotions…ecstacy and thrills, to devastion and pain.  What would romance be without its songs and what would worship and spiritual life be without its songs?  Imagine an army marching into war without pipes and drums, trumpets and clarinets!

For hundreds of years, no one knew exactly HOW or WHY music elicited all of these emotions…just that it does and we are so happy about that!  At the end of the 20th century, finally scientists began to have the tools to look at the brain in a whole new way.  This is when brain research began to really accelerate.  Neuro-chemistry books, articles and research are easy to find.  All you have to do is search for Brain Chemicals and music, to find dozens and dozens of studies on the brain and music.

As a blogger and a music researcher myself, I keep close tabs on what brings people to my blogs and my sites.  I am interested to know what other people want to know and understand about the healing power of music.  Earlier today, I was looking at some of this analytic  information and I saw that someone had come to my brain and music blog by searching for “is there scientific evidence on music raising endorphins?”  When I searching for the same, I came across so many fascinating NEW studies that have just been done in the past 3-5 years  One of the best ones is http://www.bbc.com/news/health-12135590, “Music Turns on Feel-good chemicals in the Brain.”  This appeared on the BBC website.’

Another great one is https://www.wired.com/2011/01/the-neuroscience-of-music/, “The Neuroscience of Music.”  If you’ve always wanted to understand more about how music works in our brains and in our bodies.  start with these two articles, and then get into the 200-300+ blog posts here in my blog.  There’s nothing more fascinating to those of us who love music as the lifeblood of our lives.  If you’re looking for a career that will benefit nearly anyone in the world, think about going into music therapy, or into science and then neuroscience!  I’m available to consult if you’re interested!  DrAlice@HealingMusicEnterprises.com.

When people listen to their favorite music, serotonin, dopamine, and other “feel-good” chemicals are released.  When people listen to their favorite soothing, calming music, the relaxation neuropeptides are released. (called GABA).  We now offer five, hour-long playlists that incorporate rhythmic entrainment and are proven effective and calming the anxious mind and body and decreasing medication requirements.  Go NOW to wwwSurgicalSerenitySolutions.com/calm.

 

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Surgical Serenity Solutions Hospital Consulting is Now Open for Business!

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Music Medicine in the Hospital

Dr Cash consults with hospitals around the world.

I’ve been selling pre-loaded headphones to hospitals and patients for a about 11 years now.  I’ve really learned a lot about how hospitals operate, how their purchasing departments work and especially about how excited the surgeons and anesthesiologists get when they find that there is a well-researched product that they can use in order to get better surgical outcomes using music.

But you know that this is not just any music.  While some hospitals continue to play music through speakers in the OR, many more are realizing that the patient needs to have their own slow, soothing music coming through headphones.  They have now learned about the power of rhythmic entrainment and are wanting to provide this to their patients.

This is why my Music Medicine consulting has been launched.  I am proposing to present a webinar for hospitals that will present an overview of all that Music Medicine can offer in a hospital, not only in surgery, but also in Pain Management, Labor and Delivery, Oncology, Behavioral Health and more. Hospitals can start out with one year of licensing our 5 playlists, and get 5-10 hours of consulting.

Or they could purchase 5-10 hours of consulting and get a free year of our licensed music.  I am starting out at a very reasonable price for each hospital, based on the number of beds they have.  I highly recommend starting with either Surgery or Pain Management.  Here’s the form to fill out if you are interested:  https://www.surgicalserenitysolutions.com/contact-us-licensing/

Every day, more and more research is published about the benefits of music with surgery and anesthesia.  To read some of the most recent ones, click here:  https://www.surgicalserenitysolutions.com/medical-research/.

One of the things that I teach physicians and other healthcare professionals about is the difference between Music Therapy and Music Medicine.  In a nutshell, music therapy must be administered by a board-certified music therapist, who works one-on-one with the patient.  Music Medicine can be administered by any healthcare professional who understands the basics of rhythmic entrainment and musical taste.

With our five rhythmic entrainment playlists, you have three playlists for surgery, one for children, newborns and preemies, and one for patients over 70-99.  All of these playlists have been used with thousands of patients for calming effects.  They can be streamed to Bluetooth headphones or used with wired headphones and a smartphone or MP3 player.  I’m already working with hospitals around the world and am excited about creating a Music Medicine System for YOUR hospital.

You can email me anytime at DrAlice@SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com.

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Would you like your local hospital to offer music through headphones for surgery?

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Would you like for your local hospital to offer music through headphones for surgery? I’ve been working in this field for over 25 years now and I think the answer is a resounding “YES!”  Patients who go to the hospital or Ambulatory Care Center for a colonoscopy, a joint replacement surgery or cataract surgery, definitely want to be a comfortable and pain-free as possible.

For decades now, doctors, hospitals, and medical researchers have been conducting studies that show beyond the shadow of a doubt that music is powerful and positive in its ability to decrease anxiety, pain perception, and therefore, medication reduction.  But right now, the hospitals that are offering music therapy are doing so only when music therapists are available to provide live music and create a relationship with that patient.

Music therapists are awesome and do amazing work, but there are not nearly enough to go around. You might say that music therapists are the “gold standard” but when a patient is anxious, fearful, and possibly in pain, Music Medicine is the go-to!  And what exactly is Music Medicine, you ask?  Music Medicine is an intervention that is offered by any caregiver when they provide soothing music that patient can entrain with, through cordless headphones or earbuds.  It is so easy and effective that every hospital on the planet could be doing this right now with very little expense.

For years I have been offering pre-loaded, cordless headphones on my website, Surgical Serenity Solutions, and now I am also offering just the powerful proprietary music that I have put together over the past 25 years.  To purchase one of our playlists, go to the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store on you smartphone or tablet and listen to the samples, then choose the playlists you like best.

This music has been studied and tested by anesthesiologists and surgeons in Louisville, KY and the published a study that you can read HERE. This study found that patients who were listening to the this music through cordless headphones, experienced 20% less pain perception than those who did not listen to music through headphones. We were so excited, but not surprised.

In addition, I am creating a consulting option for hospitals that want to understand how THEY can get music working for their patients in their hospital.

All five playlists will be available for licensing at a very reasonable price.

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I’d like to invite you to be part of my Music Medicine group on Facebook!

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About a week ago I decided it was high time to create a group for people that believe in the power of music during surgery and other medical procedures.  I started out by posting some of the most powerful research studies, videos and testimonials who have used Surgical Serenity Solutions to get through their procedure.  I’ve already got almost 100 user, but I’d really like to have YOU!!  If you’re already on Facebook just click below, so that we might answer your questions, as well as benefit from your experience! Thanks!

Music Medicine for Hospital and Surgery Centers and their patients
Private group · 32 members
 

Join Group

 

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How Music Can Help with Covid-19 patients in the ICU

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Patient listening to soothing music through headphones while awaiting surgeryCan music actually make a difference in patients suffering from Covid-19?  Of course!  Music can help almost anyone who responds positively to music.  Of course taste in music must be considered.  Some people can respond positively to many different types of music and others can only tolerate a very specific types of music.The important thing is to offer the patient a choice of soothing music and then provide it to them through Bluetooth headphones or earbuds.

We know that music provides a pleasant distraction to humans. Whether it’s familiar or unfamiliar doesn’t always matter, but when you’re lying in a hospital with a high fever and having trouble breathing, music can definitely help calm you down while you’re waiting for the medical treatment to start helping.

There have actually been many medical studies conducted on the benefits of music therapy for people on ventilators and the results are almost always beneficial. Music with a slow, steady rhythm has the ability to affect the body physiologically and calm the symptoms of anxiety such as extremely tense muscles, rapid, shallow breathing, and racing pulse and heartbeat.

All of these physiological symptoms make the thoughts race too, and usually the negative thoughts take over, which then increases the physiological symptoms.  Putting on headphones with soothing music can definitely break this cycle.

Right now, patients can download one or all of our therapeutic playlists at www.surgicalserenitysolutions.com/buyanapp.  These apps are available in

  • Classical
  • Smooth Jazz
  • New Age
  • Lullabies
  • Memory Care

These playlists are already being used around the world and are bringing patients much-needed relief from the bad feelings that we experience when ill in the hospital. We also have recommeneded Bluetooth headphones on our website so that you can have your own headset and streaming playlists even if you’re recovering at home.

I’ve seen patients put on our headphones for the first time, over and over, and a big smile comes over their face and a huge sigh of relief!  Our calming, soothing music, entering the brain through the 8th cranial nerve, is just what they need at this moment and can decrease or even eliminate the need for more powerful medication.  Click HERE now to get yourself either the pre-loaded headphones or some recommended Bluetooth headphones.  Then click HERE to download one or ALL of the 5 soothing playlists!

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Last-minute chance to get my new book on Music with Surgery—complimentary for YOU

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Just wanted to let all of my readers know that until midnight tonight, not sure whether it’s EST or PST. Anyway, go NOW to Click Here.  You do not need a coupon or any special code.  Just be sure you have the free Kindle app and you’re ready to go!

If you like the book and are interested in getting more information about Music as Medicine, just send me your confirmation email, and I’ll send you another bonus that will help you implement a music intervention with any medical/dental procedure on your horizon.  But hurry now to Amazon!

preparing for surgery

Dr Cash’s book on surgery

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The Value of music for reducing anxiety in critically ill patients on ventilators

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I’m writing this during the Covid-19 pandemic.  People around the world are in ICUs on mechanical ventilators.  Imagine how terrifying that must be!  There are dozens of research studies that show that listening to music while in an ICU can reduce the anxiety of these patients.

For example, here is an article published in JAMA in 2015.

Doctors and medical facilities can do a lot for patient anxiety by providing music for them that is suitable for relaxation.  One problem that they face is that using a personal Pandora or Spotify account isn’t legal for use for multiple patients.

Cataract Surgery with Bluetooth headphones and Surgical Serenity Lullaby playlist

Patients in an ICU setting can greatly benefit from soothing music through headphones.

Also, headphones significantly help patients to mute outside sounds and therefore help reduce anxiety. Although medical facilities worry about bringing in headphones that aren’t sterile, there are ways to manage this situation, such as giving each patient his or her own headphone or using disposable earpiece covers.

These are times unlike most of us have seen in our lifetimes.  Anything we can do to help an individual with Covid-19 we need to do.

Our company, Surgical Serenity Solutions has a complete kit for providing patients in an ICU with the music they need.  Here to learn more about it!

Hospitals can now consult with Surgical Serenity Solutions about how to incorporate Music Medicine into their hospital procedures.

 

Consulting for Hospitals that want to integrate Music Medicine:

Today, hospitals around the world are recognizing the many, powerful benefits that music can bring to their patients.  New research is coming out every week on the powerful benefits of Music Medicine, which is pre-recorded music especially chosen to reduce anxiety and pain perception, listened to with headphones or earbuds. Dr Cash has spoken and consulted with hospitals around the world and can help YOUR hospital get up to speed with this cost-effective and powerful intervention.  Patient satisfaction scores rocket when soothing music through personal headphones is introduced.  Insurance companies (?) and Drs love it too, because patients are discharged faster with fewer re-admissions.

If you’re interested in discussing the potential of Music Medicine in your facility, please contact us here:

www.SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com/contact-us.

In the meantime, stay well, if you possibly can!

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Surgical Serenity Jazz Playlist is Creating “Buzz”

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As soon as I wrote that title, I thought “Hmmm…maybe people could misinterpret that “buzz” word.  Of course what I’m talking about is that our Jazz playlists for surgery is getting lots of acclaim.  A lady contacted me last night saying that she had begun to run a low-grade fever and was feeling puny and depressed about the Covid-19 virus.  She decided to download one of the Serenity playlists and said that she couldn’t believe how soothing and comforting it was!  I wish I had recorded the phone call because she mentioned several things like “better than Valium” and how the saxophone just carried her to a whole different place where everything was beautiful and healthy and optimistic.  This was really exciting for me to hear because the Jazz Playlist is the only one that I specifically commissioned for Surgical Serenity since Jazz is not  style that I play.  Dozens have people have told me that they really do love it and that it is a “Go-To” when anxiety hits!  To get a download of the playlist, go to www.SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com/buyanapp.

Speaking to Drs about the power of rhythmic entrainment.

The instruments in this playlist are Piano, Saxophone, String Bass, and light drums with brushes.  The musicians are all international Jazz professionals with 30+ years experience each.  No wonder it turned out so well!  But the real key to why all of playlists work so well is that ingredient of rhythmic entrainment.  An article in “Science Direct” quotes these facts about rhythmic entrainment from:

Rhythmic entrainment as a musical affect induction mechanism

Rhythmic entrainment represents an affect induction mechanism.

Rhythmic entrainment occurs on the perceptual, autonomic, motor, and social level.

The basal ganglia play a key role in the link of rhythmic entrainment and affect.

Rhythmic entrainment supposedly induces positive valence and social dispositions.

Abstract

One especially important feature of metrical music is that it contains periodicities that listeners’ bodily rhythms can adapt to. Recent psychological frameworks have introduced the notion of rhythmic entrainment, among other mechanisms, as an emotion induction principle. In this review paper, we discuss rhythmic entrainment as an affect induction mechanism by differentiating four levels of entrainment in humans—perceptual, autonomic physiological, motor, and social—all of which could contribute to a subjective feeling component. We review the theoretical and empirical literature on rhythmic entrainment to music that supports the existence of these different levels of entrainment by describing the phenomena and characterizing the associated underlying brain processes. The goal of this review is to present the theoretical implications and empirical findings about rhythmic entrainment as an important principle at the basis of affect induction via music, since it rests upon the temporal dimension of music, which is a specificity of music as an affective stimulus.

So, although I certainly didn’t invent or discover rhythmic entrainment, Surgical Serenity Solutions was the first company to apply these principles to the surgical experience!  Get these playlists NOW at www.SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com/buyanapp.

Please let me know your questions or comments!

 

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