Day Program Intensive & Standard Outpatient

Music Therapy In The Treatment of Patients With Eating Disorders

An Interview With Music Therapist Pam Turner, L.P.C., B.C.M.T.


What IS Music Therapy?

Music Therapy can be defined as the use of music to facilitate non-music treatment goals.  It is a creative collaboration between the clients and the therapist, and it is a clinical collaboration of art and science.  But, let’s define it creatively…

We ARE music.  Each of us has unique rhythms in how our bodies work; each of us has unique patterns in how we think and act; each of us has unique tones and cadences in our style of communication; each of us has unique melodies and harmonies in our self-awareness and self-expression.  And, when we are in a healthy state of living these elements resonate and increase our quality of life; when we are in an unhealthy state of living these elements become dissonant and decrease our quality of life.

 Why Music Therapy in Eating Disorders Treatment?

As you know, when the process of eating becomes disordered it can have major affects physically, cognitively, emotionally and spiritually. It creates painful dissonance, including difficult health and relationship issues (with self and others). Music has unique qualities which can access our internal resources (based on evidence-based research). Those resources may be dormant or delayed in development for various reasons including illness, chemical changes, abuse or trauma. The complex ways in which music can affect brain activity can awaken and/or help develop new avenues to regulate our bodies and minds, including emotional expression and regulation. Music can be used in therapy or as therapy.
The role of music therapy within a multi-disciplinary treatment program is to complement and enhance the clinical work being done in individual, group and family therapy; the role of the music therapist is to have a comprehensive understanding of individual treatment goals and progress in order to support this within the context of individual or group music therapy sessions.

 How Can Music Therapy Benefit Me?

Music Therapy at Walker Wellness Clinic will focus on resonance (your unique strengths), which will lead us to identify areas of dissonance (your unique challenges). And together we create possibilities for healthy changes.


We will use your favorite music, the music of others, and create new music to address:


Stress Management

Creative Expression


We will combine the art of creating with practical techniques for living:

Listening (the use of music to  energize, relax, and/or experience emotions)

Lyric and music analysis (the use  of music for self-awareness/self-expression)

Composition and Improvision  (expanding creativity and expression)

Integrating other Creative Arts   (expanding creativity and interpersonal relationships)


You ARE music, remember? So, no previous experience or training in music is needed.

As an MT-BC, training in an accredited university Music Therapy program is necessary for me, in order to appropriately guide individual or group sessions to meet your treatment needs.  And, training as a master’s level L.P.C. allows me the added privilege of walking with you into a deeper understanding of the transformations and healing that can come out of the creative process. But, while my educational background is necessary, and might be useful at times, you bring the most important component to a music therapy session…the music of and within you.

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