The specifics about how exactly Brainwave Entrainment works. What are Alpha Waves, Theta Waves, Delta Waves, and Gamma Waves
In the past, the most common method of inducing specific brainwave states was through the use of binaural beats. One specific beat was played in one ear (through stereo headphones) and a different beat was played through the other. What the brain would naturally do in hearing these variated beats was create its own beat from the combination of the two (ie if a beat at 100 Hz was played in one ear, and a beat of 110 Hz was played in the other, the brain would resonate at 10Hz). Aside from this directing the brain into a specific state, it also causes the two hemispheres of the brain to synchronize, promoting whole brain functioning. More recently, other methods have been discovered for inducing specific brainwave states, such as isochronic tones, and monaural beats, but the bottom line is that
Isochronic tones and Monaural beats are now being considered by many to be more effective and more useful in brainwave entrainment technology. Monaural beats, unlike binaural beats, only use one beat. It is said that these are easier on the brain, and help to induce a specific brainwave state faster and more effectively, as the brain does not need to go through the process of reconciling two different frequencies.
Isochronic tones are the most recent and advanced method for brainwave entrainment audios. With isochronic tones, the same intensity is used for all tones, but they pulsate on and off at different rates. The speed, pattern, and rates of these tones can be changed and altered throughout the recording, and the brain will follow them into desired states. The use of isochronic tones opens up the ability to lead the brain into highly specific states, at specific speeds and intensities. This has opened up the doorway to producing both dominant and subdominant waves(i.e. an alpha brainwave state with subdominant theta waves), and the ability to lead the brain through different waves, at specific speeds (i.e. holding the brain in an alpha state for 10 minutes, then dropping it through theta for 20, and holding it in delta for five before bringing it back into alpha at the end of the recording.) This allows thousands of different possibilities in training the brain, and also makes the process of listening to these types of audios more natural, and more powerful.
Alpha brainwaves are resonating just below beta brainwaves at the frequency range of 8Hz to 12Hz on an EEG. Beta brainwaves are the normal, waking life, active, rational thinking and problem solving brainwaves that are dominant in most people throughout the day. Alpha brainwaves begin to show up when relaxation occurs. Often times the simple act of closing your eyes can product spurts of alpha waves. Taking a few deep breaths or consciously relaxing will do the same. When alpha waves become dominant, the body and mind are usually comfortably relaxed.
Dominant alpha brainwave states have been linked to creative problem solving, and increased artistic abilities and intuition.
The release from stress that a dominant alpha brainwave state brings will also stimulate and enhance the immune system. Some people rarely experience alpha brainwaves. These are probably the people you know that are stressed out all the time. Using alpha brainwave entrainment recordings help to relax you and to train your brain to relax when you want it to. It is also a commonly held idea that
Being in an alpha brainwave state increases the efficacy of visualizations, affirmations, and psychic practices, as being in an alpha state gives you a greater connection between the conscious and subconscious mind.
Theta brainwaves are the next level down from alpha, at a range of 4Hz-8Hz. These brainwaves commonly occur just before sleep, or in the lighter stages of sleep. They also occur while you are day dreaming, or when you experience a strong emotion. It is not so common for an adult to produce prolonged theta brainwaves unless they are an experienced meditator, or perhaps deeply involved in an intuitive art such as music or painting. A dominant theta brainwave state is one of deep relaxation (deeper than alpha) and natural healing. In prolonged dominant theta states, the brain’s sodium/potassium ratio resets and balances itself, curing mental fatigue, and improving the brain cells ability to transport and exchange neuro-chemicals. Without the means of deep meditation, or brainwave entrainment technology, this benefit would only otherwise come from sleeping or napping.Theta is known as the one of the best states for communication with the subconscious mind.
It is in the theta state that people experience bursts of inspiration, intuitive realizations and promptings, and communication with divine beings.
It is very rare for adults to experience dominant theta states while conscious unless they are experienced in the practice of meditation, or use brainwave entrainment. However, theta waves are much more common in children, and people who have had near-death experiences. Some of the long term benefits of visiting the theta brainwave state are:
– A deeper connection to one’s emotions
– Increased intuition
– Greater levels of energy and relaxation
– Enhanced self-awareness
– A greater ability to enter into a highly focused effortless learning state.
Delta brainwaves, resonating at 1Hz-4Hz, usually only occur in the deeper levels of sleep. It is even uncommon to access Delta brainwaves through meditation, unless one is very advanced, or is using brainwave entrainment. Even while using brainwave entrainment technology, it will take some mental training and practice to be able to maintain conscious awareness and not fall asleep.
Mystical and spiritual experiences have been known to happen while in the delta state. Increased exposure to Delta waves has also been reported to drastically increase the ability to empathize with others.
One of the most fascinating and beneficial things about Delta brainwaves is their ability to stimulate the release of anti-aging hormones in the body, such as HGH (human growth hormone). Increased melatonin levels are also common in this state, and regular visits to Delta have also been shown to decrease cortisol levels. (Cortisol is a hormone that is released during stressful situations, that has been linked with the aging process.) In a nutshell, Delta brainwaves are very healthy, and until now have only been accessible to us during deep sleep.
Gamma waves are the fastest brainwave at 40Hz-70Hz. These waves are associated with states of peak performance, and deep feelings of compassion. Gamma waves are unique, as they are known to be able to process information in all different areas of the brain. They are universal and are present in several different operations of brain function.
Increased exposure to gamma waves is known to drastically sharpen and improve memory, increase IQ levels, heighten sensory experience through the five senses, increase levels of self-control, and make you generally happy.
They are also known to improve the capacity for compassion, and have been found to be very prevalent in the brains of buddhist monks while they meditate.
Another general benefit of using brainwave entrainment in general is that it increases and promotes whole-brain functioning, meaning that the two hemispheres of the brain grow more connections and exchange information more easily. This can help more starkly rational people become more intuitive, and more airy-fairy people become more focused and logical.
Furthermore, using brainwave entrainment on a regular basis helps to train and habituate the brain to access these deeper brainwave states, giving it more of an ability to produce these different brainwaves in the future without the technology.
Many people have found that after using brainwave entrainment for prolonged periods of time, they were able to simply close their eyes without the technology, and their brains would naturally drop down into the deeper states without any effort on their part.
A final point is that brainwave entrainment isn’t for everyone, and it is important to be careful, reasonable, and cautious. Too much brainwave entrainment can cause adverse side effects like foggy headedness, mental overloads, too much subconscious material rising to the surface at one time, etc.
It is a good idea to follow any instructions outlined by the makers of any type of brainwave entrainment product or program, and to ease yourself carefully into using it. If experiencing any negative side effects, take a break and come back to it later. Brainwave entrainment audios are not recommended for children under the age of 18, and should not be used while driving or operating heavy machinery.
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