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Apr 29

Brainwave Entrainment and Binaural Beats

Achieving Improved States of Relaxation and Altered Consciousness with Brainwave Entrainment and Binaural Beats

Whether through the use of hypnotic drum beats or strange musical instruments, resonance and the use of specific sound frequencies to alter states of consciousness has been well-known for centuries. Ever since the time shamanic tribes used dancing and drums to achieve sometimes incredible results, sounds have been used by humanity for far more than just entertainment.

Today, brainwave entrainment and binaural beat technology are the leading edge in the research and practical innovations involved with using specific sound frequencies to alter brainwaves and induce anything from a simple state of relaxation to deep meditation, lucid dreaming, out of body experiences and even a relief of various physical symptoms involving improved memory, sleep and energy levels.

Brainwave Entrainment and Binaural Beats

What Is Brainwave Entrainment and How Does It Help?

Brainwave entrainment is a type of auditory stimulation used to induce certain states of consciousness. During the past century, scientists have found that various functions within the brain – often described as brainwaves or brainwave patterns – can be altered by inducing sounds of different frequencies into each ear (binaural).

The basic concept is that, by just listening to a short audio of 15-30 minutes per day, and using it as part of your relaxation or meditation practices, you can re-pattern your brainwaves to the extent that the altered frequency will help induce – either long term or short term – modifications in behavior, mental abilities or even the body’s ability to repair or restore certain unbalances and defects.

Either as a stand-alone process, or combined with music, audio meditation or various other stimuli, this action can often be used to soothe mental activities associated with heightened stress and anxiety, or help produce specific, targeted results, such as speeding up your thought processes, improving memory, balancing emotions or discarding negative moods.

Brainwave entrainment has grown into a huge topic of research, particularly since the development of new tools for mapping brainwave patterns – such as EEG machines. This new technology now allows scientists to associate specific brainwaves with anything from mood swings to deficient activities in parts of the brain associated with speech, memory or various other mental activities, and develop binaural brainwave altering technology to improve these mental states.

The brainwave entrainment revolution has also had a profound effect on those interested in meditative practices and the idea of influencing consciousness to achieve deep states of healing, relaxation, or even lucid dreaming and out of body experiences (OOBE).

The Science behind Binaural Beats

Binaural beats are easy enough to understand. Using basic sound generators, experts can record sounds of varying frequencies that, when listened to with a stereo headset, will induce differing frequencies or frequency patterns into each ear. This creates a beat frequency that alters brainwave activity in the brain.

For instance, when inducing a frequency of 300 Hz in one ear and 308 Hz in the other, you get a beat frequency of 8 Hz – which is the difference between the two, and incidentally is also associated with the Alpha brainwave pattern (between 7 and 13 Hz), and can be used to produce a state of calm, restful awareness.

The reason why brainwaves are altered is due to a concept called “frequency following response” which shows that brainwaves associated with functions other than hearing can also be modified when binaural beats are in use.

There are five documented brainwave levels associated with various mental states and patterns:

  • Beta (14-40 Hz) – which is normally associated with everyday wakefulness;
  • Alpha (7-13 Hz) – these waves are normally associated with a calm state of mind you’d experience either during calm wakefulness, dreaming or REM sleep;
  • Theta (4-6 Hz) – producing deep states of relaxation and meditation, this state is also responsible for NREM sleep;
  • Delta (1-3 Hz) – these brainwaves are most often linked to deep dreamless sleep or complete loss of consciousness, although on some rare occasions;
  • Gamma (larger than 40 Hz) – normally linked to higher mental activity and perception, including problem solving, highly targeted focus and emotions of heightened happiness and compassion.

Essentially, by inducing a specific beat frequency, the audio you listen to can gradually cause your brainwaves to align with it. Various combinations between beat frequencies or the use of changing frequencies in a single brainwave entrainment audio can also be used to target results more accurately.

Advanced Studies and Effects on ADD/ADHD

Brain with and without ADHD

The Monroe Institute has already proven in the 1970s that binaural beats and brainwave entrainment can have a scientifically detectable and measurable effect on actual brainwaves.

More recently, scientists have been investigating the way in which binaural beats can influence ADD and ADHD patients. So far, it has been concluded that some of the dormant and less active areas in the brains of those suffering from ADHD and ADD can easily be jump-started with the help of the right binaural beat frequencies.

In some cases, actual lasting effects were observed, for instance, when those suffering from ADD and an inability to read or perform various cognitive feats (particularly in the case of mathematical studies) used binaural beats on a daily basis for up to 3 months. The results were an increase in intellectual activity and focus, even helping children and teenagers achieve better grades in school and retain more information during class.

A Progressive and Integrative Approach

For long term healing, anxiety relief or improved focus binaural beats and brainwave entrainment are best used together with meditation and relaxation practices at a steady, gradually evolving pace. For instance, you may combine theta frequencies for deep meditation during your session every day for a few weeks, then switch to a mixture of other frequencies designed for heightened learning and memory retention.

While long term effects can more easily be manipulated and adjusted to your own specific goals, binaural beat generators and audios can show powerful results in as little as a single day, or even in just a few hours, in some instances.

There are truly no limits to the application of brainwave entrainment programs and binaural beats to improve your life. If listened to every day for just a few minutes, these audio aids can provide you with some of the most remarkable life-changing results that you can ever hope for.

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