At any given moment, our brains are being affected by our external worlds. These stimuli that are constantly surrounding us cause our brains to respond in a different manner. If you’re involved in a highly focused task or conversation, or if you’re playing a sport, your brainwaves are most likely at a higher frequency than when you’re relaxing or falling asleep after a long day. “Higher frequency” refers to the rate at which your neurons are firing. An Electroencephalogram (EEG) measures these frequencies through careful placement of electrodes along your face, neck, and head. It sounds complicated, but it’s scientifically based and harnessing the power of your brainwaves through brainwave therapy can be beneficial in a number of ways. First, a bit about the brainwaves we experience each day:
Alpha waves are our dominant brain state when we’re feeling relaxed. These feelings of relaxation can lead to higher levels of creativity and inventiveness. Alpha waves can help us to quell negative feelings of stress and anxiety. The relaxation and calmness in our brains allows ingenuity to surface. The feelings we experience with Alpha waves help us to function better. Beta waves are occurring when we feel alert and can deeply concentrate. Our brain produces Beta waves when we are engaged in a thoughtful conversation or a task that requires our deep focus. Neurons are firing more quickly, so we experience peak levels of cognition, dexterity, and vision. Theta waves are similar to Alpha waves in that they produce feelings of relaxation, but the relaxation is much deeper, even meditative. Think of how you feel when you are just about to fall asleep or when you’re just waking from sleep. It is during these times that we are often “dreaming awake” or recalling memories that may have been suppressed or dormant. One may even experience a feeling similar to floating on air. Delta waves have the slowest frequency of all brainwave states. In this state of mind, our bodies are deeply in sleep. It is healing, restorative, and essential for human function. Considering the properties of each of these brainwave states, it may be easy to see why being able to control our brainwaves can be decidedly useful.
What are binaural beats?
Binaural beats are sounds. These sounds are created at different frequencies, much the way our brainwaves operate at different frequencies, and are meant to induce specific brainwave states.
Essentially, what happens during this type of therapy or brain training is that a different tone is played in each ear – each has a slightly different frequency. Our brains mix these two sounds together and create a single sound. When we do this, we trigger specific brainwaves. Depending on the frequency, the production of these brainwaves creates different feelings. If Alpha waves are produced, we feel relaxed. If Beta waves are triggered, we feel more alert and focused, and so on. Most people use binaural beats for one or more of three purposes: meditation, spiritual awakening, or tuning their chakras.
People who are seeking a meditative state are primarily going to focus on creating an Alpha or Theta frequency. Binaural beats can easily help a person get into these zones rather quickly. Think of a metronome and how quickly hearing that tone can put you in a relaxed state, or at least calm your mind. This is similar, only to a deeper degree of relaxation.
For those who are seeking a spiritual awakening, which is not specific to a certain religion, the aim is to increase Beta waves. A peak cognitive level and high brainwave frequencies are necessary to achieve this elevated place of evolutionary progress.
Chakra tuning is a primal concept. It’s all about increasing the power (or power centers) in our bodies. Fine tuning these power centers is rejuvenating and is essential for our well-being. Since our chakras are all identified by different frequencies, as are our brainwaves, just one brainwave frequency will not serve to tune our chakras. This type of therapy stimulates each of our chakras using multiple sounds at various frequencies.
Check out a great video that stimulates 5-HTP production below