Science has found how to get that terrible song out your head.
Chew gum. That’s right, a stick of Extra is a great tool for a clear mind. Chewing gum significantly reduces involuntary musical imagery by distracting our short term memory which is connected to a moving mouth.
Songs tend to live in our short term memory, so therefore if you cut off the source by chewing gum and keeping your mouth busy, you’re in the clear.
An Earworm is a notoriously rough thing to shake; some shit songs just won’t go away, usually anything by Ed Sheeran. Researchers like Kelly Jakubowski, Ph.D. at Goldsmiths University in London are calling the phenomenon Involuntary Musical Imagery which she claims can be produced from tunes with simple melodies, fast tempos, and repetition.
Jakubowski and fellow scientists collected their findings in a study published in journal Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity and the Arts. According to the authors, three of the most common earworm culprits are Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, and Queen. We’d also like to nominate Sheeran.
If gum chewing doesn’t work, there are alternatives you can try, such as doing a puzzle like a sudoku or listen to another song, hopefully, one that isn’t anywhere near the Top 40.
However, Jakubowski insists that you should never force an ear worm to go away, stating, “”The earworm phenomenon might be similar in that attempts to actively displace earworms may sometimes backfire and actually increase the length of the episodes.”
We’re going to start buying gum in bulk.