April 25, 2022

How Do Music Choices Affect Driving?
How Do Music Choices Affect Driving?
Music Choices Influence Affective Driving

Johnny Cash, Tom Petty, or Snoop Dogg, whichever artists’ tunes move us on the dance floor, also influence how we move on the road. For truck drivers or anyone spending time behind the wheel, making the right music choice is essential because music influences mood, emotions, and alertness. How does music affect us, and what is the right choice for truck drivers and others alike?

Music Choices Affect Driving Mood

We have all felt the effects of music on our mood; whether crying to a sad love song or raging to death metal, what we listen to influences how we feel. The reason why music affects mood involves a chemical reaction in the brain. When listening to music we enjoy, the chemical dopamine, or the feel-good hormone, is released into the brain, similar to eating sweets, love, or cocaine. Feeling good while driving reduces stress and stress-related health issues and helps deal with sleep problems, which is essential for drivers on the road for long periods.

Best Music Choices for Affective Driving

Music influences mood differently, and some types prove to be better suited for driving than others. Research shows that classical music is the best choice for influencing a positive attitude, reducing anxiety and anger, and increasing feelings of relaxation. You won’t have to start loving Beethoven, though, for those who have a particular taste in music. Listening to self-selected music or your favorite types of music has just as positive of an effect. Having a positive mood behind the wheel can help avoid distracted driving, which some styles of music, such as heavy metal or sad love songs, might provoke. While heavy metal music may bring feelings of anger or hostility for those who don’t favor the genre, if heavy metal music is what you love, it may bring positive feelings and even positive health effects like lowering blood pressure. There is no one correct answer for the best music choice for driving, but the best bet is to choose the music you love that brings feelings of happiness, energy, and joy, leaving angry and sad music for another time.

Alternatives to Music Choices that Affect Driving

When looking for something to listen to while driving, music is usually the first choice for those looking for audio entertainment on the road. However, not everyone prefers to listen to music while driving and often search for alternatives for audio stimulation. Audiobooks are a great alternative to music on the road, favored by many truck drivers and individuals who spend a significant amount of time driving. Podcasts are also becoming popular among truck drivers and others on the road, with topics ranging from murder mysteries to comedy.