Sunday, July 9, 2017

What is Wellness?

Filed under Wellness


Wellness is a family having funbuzz word that is being used a lot in health care these days. Wellness is the active pursuit of health. Many organizations are turning towards the wellness model, which is designed to prevent illness and promote health, instead of the medical model, which is to treat illness when it occurs.

Many Wellness Models have at least 6 dimensions, or areas of life, which all need attention in order to promote and maintain health. Those dimensions are Physical, Intellectual, Emotional, Social, Spiritual, and Vocational Wellness. Some models add Cultural and/or Environmental Wellness, too.

Music therapy can work within a wellness model, as is often seen when music therapists work in assisted living or skilled nursing units for older adults. However, music therapy in a wellness model can also work with children, and in all settings, like hospitals, psychiatric settings, schools, and private practice. In all of these settings, the Wellness Model would inform the music therapy practice and would be evident in the goals and treatment plan.

Here are some examples of music therapy goals within a wellness model:

  • Physical Wellness: Client will participate in group drumming for 30 minutes of sustained physical activity.
  • Intellectual Wellness: Client will maintain a steady beat for 10 minutes during instrumental improvisation.
  • Emotional Wellness: Client will write a song using the blues structure expressing loneliness and identify 2 coping skills for when she feels lonely.
  • Social Wellness: Client will make eye contact with therapist and one peer during group instrumental improvisation.
  • Spiritual Wellness: Client will participate in music assisted relaxation session and identify one time this week to spend 10 minutes using this technique outside of music therapy session.
  • Vocational Wellness: Client will participate in facility choir practice 1 time this week.

I encourage you to look at ways to improve your wellness. First, see if you can identify up to three things you do each week that might fit into each of these wellness domains. Are there any gaps or domains where you have fewer items listed? Pick one of those areas and choose one way that you can address that domain. If you are a caregiver of a person with a disability, help them identify a need area and a way that they can address it.





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