Musical Anhedonia: Scientists have discovered what is happening to the brains of those people who never find enjoyment in listening to music - and it's not good.
Anhedonia is a state where in one can not find or experience pleasure in certain activities which others usually find enjoyable like exercise, sex, social interaction or music.
With regard to music, science has proven that it does something to our brain. Our brain responds to music even before we learn about it. Studies have suggested that music improves our brain and enhanced our memory.
To look at it in a different perspective, what happens to a brain of the person who can not find pleasure in music, someone who has musical anhedonia?
According to Professor Théodule-Armand Ribot
, "The state of anhedonia, if I may coin a new word to pair off with analgesia
," he writes, "has been very little studied, but it exists."
If listening to music improves one's brain, that simply shows the area of the brain that responds to music is in high connectivity mode. So does that mean that those who do not enjoy music or do not respond to it have issues with the connectivity of their brain?
That seems to be the case in a study
by researchers from Spain and Canada. The study suggests that the reward–auditory cortex of those who do not experience that musical pleasure have selectively reduced responses in the cortical-mesolimbic system.
The researchers used fMRI in three groups of 15 participants, each with different sensitivity to music reward. The results showed that those participants who are anhedonic to music showed selective reduction of activity for music in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc), but normal activation levels for a monetary gambling task.
In contrast, those who have high response to music showed enhanced connectivity between these structures.
This findings help us understand how music provides reward value to individuals.
See: That Catchy Last Song Syndrome, There’s a Science Behind It!