You only need a pair of headphones and ‘Brain Entrainment Music‘ to reduce stress, improve your sleep, and improve your brain health.
It was the Sound of Music that brought me out of a two-week long coma and provided me with many healing benefits in my recovery and rehabilitation.
In 1997, I was involved in a very serious motorcycle accident and sustained a severe Traumatic Brain Injury as well as many other life threatening injuries. At the scene of the accident, I had stopped breathing and did not have any vital signs. I had to undergo many life saving surgeries including Neurosurgery, Open Heart surgery, Lung surgery, General surgery, Vascular surgery, Orthopaedic surgery, and Plastic surgery. I remained lifeless in a deep coma for more than two weeks which led the top surgeons and doctors at a leading trauma hospital to declare me “Brain Dead” and suggest to my parents to have me removed from the life support system that was keeping me alive.
This is when my brother, Jonathan put my walkman headphones on my ears and played the music that I loved. – ipods were not available at this time. 🙂 It was after this that I started regaining consciousness and eventually emerged from my coma.
The use of sound for healing was known to almost all ancient cultures and civilizations. For example, the ancient Egyptians used vowel sound chants in healing because they believed vowels were sacred. Tibetan monks use singing bowls to promote deep relaxation, stress reduction, holistic healing, and chakra balancing. The Aboriginal or Indigenous peoples used the sound of voice and drums to heal various conditions.
Sound is a wave, and like all waves, sound carries energy. This is very important to life since everything is made up of various energetic frequencies. Everything in nature resonates to sound, therefore, everything is affected by sound frequencies. The body is made up of vibrating energy and therefore disease in the body indicates that something is out of balance with the natural frequencies in life.
In order to understand the healing aspects of Sound, it is important to understand brain waves. The nerve cells in our brain produce brain waves that communicate information from one part of the brain to another.
Brain waves are like musical notes. The low frequency waves are like the sound of a drum while the high frequency waves are like the sound of a flute. Our brain waves determine how we feel. If your brain waves are moving slowly you will feel tired, sleepy, dreamy, and slow. If your brain waves are moving fast you will feel energized, wired and hyper-alert.
When your brain waves are in sync with your activity, then your brain will function efficiently and effectively. Stress or poor sleep will interfere with the natural balance of your brain waves and result in various problems such as insomnia, anxiety, depression, memory problems, anger, etc.
Brain waves are measured in Hertz (cycles per second) and are divided into five different frequencies or speeds. The five brain waves in order from the slowest to the fastest are: (1) Delta, (2)Theta, (3) Alpha, (4) Beta and (5) Gamma.
(1) Delta Waves: Frequency range = 0 Hz to 4 Hz
Delta brain waves are the slowest and mainly occur during deep sleep. Delta waves are associated with deep levels of relaxation and restorative sleep. Irregular Delta brain wave activity has been linked to sleep problems, memory problems and other learning difficulties. Healthy levels of Delta waves are very important in one’s recovery from a brain injury as they contribute to a more restful and restorative sleep.
(2) Theta Waves: Frequency range = 4 Hz to 8 Hz
Theta brain waves are present during deep meditation and light sleep and in the REM dream state. They are also present when we are engaged in an automatic task such as driving or brushing teeth. Theta brain waves improve your focus and keep you calm and balanced.
(3) Alpha Waves: Frequency range = 8 Hz to 12 Hz
Alpha brain waves occur when the brain is daydreaming or at the beginning of meditation and practicing mindfulness. Alpha waves help calm you down and promote feelings of relaxation which helps your body get prepared for sleep. Alpha is the frequency between our conscious thinking and subconscious mind.
(4) Beta Waves: Frequency range = 12 Hz to 40 Hz
Beta brain waves are the high frequency waves most commonly found in awake humans. They occur during conscious states such as cognitive reasoning, calculation, reading, speaking or thinking. If you are in a business meeting you are likely in a high Beta state. High levels of Beta brain waves result in stress, anxiety and high adrenaline levels. This will adversely affect one’s recovery from a brain injury.
(5) Gamma Waves: Frequency range = 40 Hz to 100 Hz
Gamma brain waves are the fastest of the brain waves and are associated with higher states of conscious perception. There is a strong association between Gamma waves and peak concentration.
The Implications of our Brainwaves:
When our brain waves are out of balance, we will experience many different problems such as sleep problems, anxiety disorders, depression, anger, problems with our attention, chronic pain, etc. In order for someone to get a restorative sleep the frequency of their brain waves must drop to slow delta waves. However, this may be difficult for someone to achieve as it may be hard for them to relax after having a busy day. Their brain may remain in the Beta state on high alert.
It is possible to use Sound to help a brain injury survivor cope with many of their problems and improve their brain health.
I have used a Science based Sound Healing Technique called “Brainwave Entrainment” to alter my brain waves and improve the health of my brain after sustaining three separate Traumatic Brain Injuries.
This healing technique involves listening to sounds and music that have “Binaural Beats”, which help me go from a state where I am wide awake to a relaxed sleep state within minutes.
Brainwave Entrainment is a method to alter the frequency of your brainwaves by listening to sound or music that contains the desired frequency. So if you want to sleep, you would listen to sounds or music that slowly descends to a delta frequency. This causes your brain to reduce the frequency of its own brain waves to match this new frequency. However, humans can’t hear anything below 20 Hz in the delta frequency range. So, it would be useless to listen to a tone, sound or music that is below 20 Hz.
Using Binaural beats is a technique to create sound or tones in the lower delta frequency range directly inside the brain. Binaural beats is a sound wave technique in which the right and left ears listen to two slightly different frequency tones.
These frequencies when processed by the brain cancel each other out, creating a whole new frequency. For example, if the left ear registers a tone at 200 Hz and the right registers a tone at 210 Hz, the binaural beat that is registered in the brain is the difference between the two frequencies (210 Hz – 200 hz = 10 Hz), which is an Alpha wave. This 10 Hz Alpha wave frequency tone can’t be directly heard by the ears, but it would create this frequency in the brain. It does this because the brain will synchronize itself to this new frequency that is being registered.
Using Binaural Beats has been an effective way to help improve my sleep and reduce anxiety and ultimately improve my brain health. Try out the following Binaural Beats. They won’t hurt you. The worst thing that can happen is that you will feel more relaxed listening to these peaceful and soothing Binaural Beats.
To listen to Binaural beats you will need:
1) a music playing system such as a cell phone.
2) a pair of stereo headphones because each ear hears the sounds in a different frequency. *** To get the full benefit you need to use headphones.
3) 15-30 minutes of listening time
4) a quiet and relaxing place to listen
5) patience and regular practice
Try out these Binaural Beats:
GAIA Meditation: https://www.gaiameditation.com/free-binaural-beats/
REFERENCES – The following websites were used and have some useful information:
Sound Healing in Ancient Egypt by Avilone Starre, 2015: http://www.avilonestarre.com/blog/sound-healing-in-ancient-egypt
Ancient Frequencies, 2012, Michael Jacobson: https://soundhealingcenter.com/shrf/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Indigenous-Sound-Healing.pdf
MATTEO NUNNER, SOUND THERAPY AND WELL-BEING: SOME SCIENTIFIC STUDIES, 2017: https://www.medicinanarrativa.eu/sound-therapy-and-well-being-some-scientific-studies
Neuroacoustics: The Healing Power of Sound. By Erik L. Goldman | Editor-in-Chief – Vol. 5, No. 3. Fall, 2004: https://scientificsounds.com/index.php/library/neuroacoustics-the-healing-power-of-sound
Lucid: Your 5 Brainwaves: Delta, Theta, Alpha, Beta and Gamma: https://lucid.me/blog/5-brainwaves-delta-theta-alpha-beta-gamma/
Fall Asleep Fast With Binaural Beats: https://sleephabits.net/binaural-beats