Concussion Jams: Sound for when you’re concussed

| Senior Cadenza Editor
HN Hoffmann

Unfortunately, concussions have been a bit too prevalent this year within the Student Life community, and for many, it is their first experience with head trauma. While the doctor can give you advice on how to heal, manage pain and return to normalcy, there are some factors that they don’t address as deeply. Especially as an active student, this type of experience is difficult and throws a wrench in your regular routine. 

In this day and age, technology is prevalent in nearly every waking hour. For many college students, music streaming has become a default of daily life. We can’t get through the day without some technological auditory entertainment, whether that be music, podcasts, movies or TV shows. Given that, getting concussed takes a big toll on college students. We are encouraged to remove these auditory “distractions” from our daily lives, and for many, this is not easy. 

While concussions are very subjective, there are a few things that “hit different” under these circumstances; namely, darkness, silence and dark chocolate. It’s hard to really understand the fogginess and cognitive discomfort that comes with concussions if you’ve never experienced one, but certain things bother and soothe this sensitive condition of the mind. 

In my experience, there were certain songs that metaphorically “smoothed out my brain” when my injury seemed to cause distress. The best way to describe this sensation is that there are no gyri and fissures to be ignited or irritated in the brain, but instead, it is smooth and inoperable. It cannot be penetrated by thought, which, when you are down with a head injury, is the ultimate goal. That being said, here is some music that has proven to ease the brain during a head injury. 

Originally, it hurt my head to listen to anything, but then I listened to classical music, specifically Chopin. This is a great starting spot for music. As you ease back into the auditory stimuli, classical music is a solid option. It doesn’t have words, it is usually easy on the ears (especially if it’s only piano), and it doesn’t take too much thinking to appreciate the music. I also listened to “Look Up” by Joy Oladokun, “Drive” by Johnny P., and “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol. —Orli Sheffey

Norah Jones is by no means ‘brain smoothing’ because her music is boring or mindless, but rather, it is because her music provides so much peace. It is sweet, easy on the ears and slow. Slowness in music helps with concussions because it feels like it reduces any unnecessary anxiety.  —Gracie Hime

TV shows that I’ve already seen, but like a podcast — with a concussion, it’s detrimental to the healing process to spend too much time looking at electronics. This option gives your brain some kind of stimulation without you having to exert too much mental awareness. —Lydia McKelvie

The Violin Pop Playlist. This playlist is perfect for the early-concussed because it takes out the extra pressure of words and is much less disorienting to listen to. A lot of the time, words in music can further confuse the already struggling mind, so this is an easy way to transition into music without too much cognitive interest. —Julia Cleary

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