What is music therapy?
Ageneral introduction to the increasingly popular technique of what music therapy is.
The benefits of music therapy in relieving stress and improving relaxation are widely accepted, as is its value in the well being of children and the elderly. Some studies have shown that music can affect the rhythm of breathing and heartbeat, and can alter blood pressure.
As we enter the 21st century, we are all aware of the pressures of daily life - home, family and work combine to increase levels of tension, and finding your own personal cure for stress becomes more important. Finding time to relax, however, can be hard when you're always on the go; people today are spending more time working and less time on leisure activities, which directly impacts on their levels of stress. Music is a great antidote to the demands of life today - whether you play a favorite CD, attend concert recitals or play an instrument - the therapeutic benefits of music can calm even the most troubled mind.
Music must be as old as language: speech is basically musical, and rhythm and phrasing are even more fundamental to language than the meanings of the words themselves. The use of music as therapy therefore probably predates the appearance of any written records. It is known that the ancient Egyptians and Greeks thought highly of the curative powers of music - in Greece, Apollo was the god of both music and healing. It was also in Greece that Pythagoras formulated the rules of harmonics and used them as the basis for a school of philosophy and medicine. Similarly, musical cultures evolved in ancient civilizations such as those in China, Persia and India as well as Europe. It has long been used for self-expression and as a healing remedy, and there are numerous accounts of the healing properties of music in the Bible.
What is music therapy?
At the simplest level, music has the power to soothe and calm, and to enhance or alter moods. Media advertisers, shopping outlets, film moguls and many others exploit the power of music for one purpose or another. Hospitals are increasingly using music as a means of creating a peaceful atmosphere in which treatment can be carried out more easily and with greater success. In addition, many practitioners of music therapy use passive music - simply listening to music - in treating patients who suffer from emotional disorders such as anxiety and depression, autism and other developmental disorders. Such therapists believe that music promotes healing through the vibrational energy of different tones or pitches of sound, and that exposure to music can help to bring the tissues and organs of the body into harmony. Active music therapy, on the other hand, is mainly used in the treatment of those who have difficulty in expressing themselves and relating to other people. It may also be valuable in the care of those suffering from Alzheimer's disease. It can help the elderly and disabled to maintain healthy mind and body coordination.
Consulting a Therapist
Therapy usually involves group sessions at least once a week, each session lasting an hour or longer. You will be encouraged to participate in the group in playing musical instruments or singing. It is not important if you are not musical - rhythmic shaking of a tambourine or beating a drum can be just as satisfying as playing a flute or viola. Music sessions - under the leadership of the therapist - are geared to the needs of the individual patient.
Music therapy is ideal for self-help. You can enrich your life if you can spare the time to learn a musical instrument; or listen to special therapeutic tapes or choose music from your own collection that accurately reflects your current mood or the mood you want to experience. For instance, if you want to feel confident, listen to brisk, cheerful music; if you want to feel romantic, choose something soft and melodic. However, this technique is not just to alter your mood, but also an avenue to explore and examine a specific, usually adverse, frame of mind. For instance, if you are feeling irate, it may be therapeutic to play "angry" music, which will allow you to look for the roots of your antagonism and exorcize them. You may also want to try a technique known as "toning", which involves singing at the most primitive level, using grunts and groans, and cries and sighs, as a way of venting and releasing pent-up emotions.
Gold Jewelry Setting & Gold Purity
Karat is the system used to state the amont of pure gold an item contains. The higher the karat number, the higher the percentage of gold in your jewelry.
The system of measuring karats is based on a scale of 24, with 100 percent gold equaling 24 karats. Since 24K gold is usually considered too soft for jewelry, the gold in jewelry item is alloyed with other metals to strengthen and harden it. The karat mark tells us the ratio of pure gold to these other metals.
24 Karat (24K) gold is pure gold
22 Karat (22K) gold contains 22 parts gold and 2 parts of one or more additional metals, making it 91.6% gold
21 Karat (21K) gold contains 21 parts gold and 3 parts of one or more additional metals, making it 87.5% gold
18 Karat (18K) gold contains 18 parts gold and 6 parts of one or more additional metals, making it 75% gold
14 Karat (14K) gold contains 14 parts gold and 10 parts of one or more additional metals, making it 58.3% gold
12 Karat (12K) gold contains 12 parts gold and 12 parts of one or more additional metals, making it 50% gold
10 Karat (10K) gold contains 10 parts gold and 14 parts of one or more additional metals, making it 41.7% gold.
In the United States, 10K gold is the minimum karat that can be called "gold".
GOLD JEWELRY SETTING
Most jewelry is crafted from individual components. The pieces are often created on the jeweler's bench and adjoined with molten precious metals. With a few components such as earring-posts, chains and hinges (often known as "findings"), these basic components are used to make everything from solitaire and gem-set rings, to earrings, necklaces, pendants and more complex pieces. Here we present the various setting styles used to set jewels in precious metals along with brief description of how each setting looks as well as what makes each setting special.
Is also known as claw setting. It has small claws with a vice-like grip that are bent over the girdle of the gem to ensure its secured position.
Typical claw setting has 4 claws. Claw settings with 6 claws are also called the "Tiffany" setting because it was originally developed by the founder of Tiffany & Co. in 1886.
The claws must always be equal.
The visible claw ends are often rounds, ovals, points, V-shapes (usually called "Chevron"), flat and sometimes formed into ornamental shapes (usually called "Enhanced Prongs").
As all gemstones are suitable for prong setting, it is the most frequently used method of setting gems into jewelry. Prong settings are frequently seen because they are easier to adjust to the size of an individual gemstone.
Pront setting brilliantly shows off the gemstone, since the gemstone is positioned higher and is more easily seen.
Prong setting is especially popular for solitaire engagement rings and in bridal rings. When combined with Pave settings, Prong settings are considered to be the most suitable for women as this setting is more feminine, especially for designs with smaller shoulders and smaller gemstones.
The more claws, the more secure and safe your gemstones will be !
Pronounced Pa Vay, Pave settings are claw-like settings but are so small that they are barely visible. The claws are triangular-like and are usually handmade.
The settings are either created by use of tiny prongs that hold the jewels on both sides, or are crafted by scooping beads of precious metal out to hold the gems in place.
Pave setting produce a carpet of brilliance across the entire surface of a piece of jewelry. The surface is encrusted, or quite literally "paved" in diamonds and gems, and the body of the jewelry is brought vibrantly to life.
Pave setting displays an illusionary bigger look using multiple gemstones.
Pave setting is usually combined with other gemstone settings to add more effect and beauty.
Pave settings are best for diamonds. Pave setting is often used in conjunction with white gold, which creates an effect of the whole piece of jewelry being crafted from diamonds.
Pave setting is best for round, oval, princess, emerald, square and baguette cuts.
A "bezel" setting is a crafted diskette of metal that holds the gemstone by its girdle to the ring, securely encircling the entire circumference of the gem. It is labor intensive and must be crafted to precisely circumnavigate the outline of the gem.
Variations of the "bezel" setting are the "flush" or gypsy" settings. The surface of the ring has a window cut into it that exactly fits the size of the gem. Secured from underneath, the crown of the gem rises from the ring beatifully catching rays of light.
A bezel setting needs to be balanced and straight, from angle-to-angle. Gemstones with sides/angles are considered difficult while oval and rounds are easier.
Bezels can have straight, scalloped edges and can be molded into a gemstone of any shape.
A bezel setting protects the edges, the girdle and the pavilion of the gemstones.
Bezel setting adds height, dimension and a great modern look.
Bezel setting is best suited to people with active lifestyles. Bezel settings are especially considered the best for men because these setting show masculinity, especially when the designs have BIG shoulders and BIG gemstones.
Bezel setting is best for earrings, necklaces, bracelets and rings.
A setting technique whereby gemstones are held side-by-side by their girdles between two long tracks of precious metal. When used with square, princess and rectangular shaped jewels, the effect is breathtaking as no metal apears between the jewels -- they appear to float in a tightly bejeweled chain within the jewelry.
The gemstones in channel setting are set closely together, so that no gold between the gem is necessary. This produces the maximum amount of light and brightness from the gemstones and allows the jewelry to keep looking bright for a long time.
In channel setting it is very important precisely cut the gemstones pavilion, if not the gemstones will crack or be lost !
Channel setting is often used in commercial jewelry designs. Often seen in eternity bands and tennis bracelets, gemstones are held side-by-side by their girdles between two long tracks of precious metal.
Channel setting is best for diamonds and for round, oval, princess, emerald, square and baguette cuts.
Channel setting is best for rings and bracelets.
These are short bars that run like a railway track across a ring. Gemstones are individually set between these bars leaving the sides of the gemstones exposed to light.
An increasingly popular setting style, this technique maximizes the amount of light entering the gemstones creating superior brilliance and sparkle.
Bar setting is a version of the channel setting and can often combine a contemporary and classic loo in one design.
Bar setting is best for diamond rings and for round, oval, princess, emerald, square and baguette cuts.
invisible-set gemstones are placed very closely together, with the mdetal concealed underneath the stones, giving them the appearance of a continuous, uninterrupted surface. Since the metal of the setting is not seen, this type of setting is an excellent way to showcase the brilliance or color of the gemstones themselves. It also allows an increased amount of light to enter the stone (and thus give off more brilliance or color), since there are no prongs or bezels impeding the light's entry.
In a cluster setting, several stones are mounted together in a group, for a cluster effect. It is frequently seen with several small stones surrounding a central, larger stone.
This setting uses pressure to hold a stone between two open ends of the metal mounting, making the stone appear as if it's floating.