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Study reveals sad music makes depressed people feel better

music news 06/05/2019

Sometimes when we’re feeling a bit down, music becomes an outlet for our emotions. If we're feeling sad, we throw on some sad music and sometimes it makes us feel a little better - but why?

A recent study has revealed that people with depression can actually benefit from listening to sad songs when they’re already feeling under the weather.

The study published in Emotion has built on an earlier study from 2015 that found depressed people enjoyed listening to sad music over happy music. Researchers played music for 76 female undergrads at the University of South Florida, half of whom were depressed.

Similar to the results found in 2015, participants feeling depressed preferred listening to sad music to match their mood, even expressing that the music made them feel better.

Calming effects were reported from the study, which further supports the notion that sad songs can - somewhat surprisingly - be useful mood boosters if you're feeling low.

Obviously the study has its limitations - for example the study only included female participants, and a small pool of participants at that - but if you do find yourself not feeling too good maybe some mood-matching music is worth a shot.