My latest area of interest that I would like to share with you is binaural beats. You might ask what they are. Here is a definition of a binaural beat if you are not familiar with it. According to WebMD, a binaural beat is an illusion created by the brain when you listen to two tones with slightly different frequencies at the same time. For example, if you listen to a 440 Hz tone with your left ear and a 444 Hz tone with your right ear, you would hear a 4 Hz tone, the numeric difference between the two tones in Hz.
Binaural means “having or relating to two ears”. Basically, when you play two tones with a slightly different frequency, they travel separately to the inferior colliculus. This is a part of the brain in charge of collecting audio input. Once there, the tones mix together into a single one, a binaural beat, which is perceived as an entirely new frequency. In this sense, you are hearing something that isn’t actually there. In other words, an auditory illusion. Binaural beat – first discovered in 1839 by physicist Heinrich Wilhelm Dove – refers to the coalescence of different audio frequencies, one in each ear, to help trigger brain activity in the flow state.
There are five different kinds of brainwaves
Delta: 1-4 Hz. Delta is the lowest frequency state, and it’s linked to deep sleep, healing and pain relief, meditation, anti-ageing, cortisol reduction and access to the unconscious mind.
Theta: 4-8 Hz. Theta binaural beats benefits include meditation, deep relaxation and creativity.
Alpha: 8-14 Hz. When you are in an alpha state of mind, your brain is focused and productive. Alpha brain waves help you relax and focus, reduce stress, maintain positive thinking, increase your learning capabilities, easily engage in activities and the environment because you are in a state of flow.
Beta: 14-30 Hz. Beta is a higher frequency brainwave that helps keep your attention focused, your analytical thinking and problem-solving abilities intact, stimulating energy, cognition and action at a high level.
Gamma: 30-100 Hz. With a higher frequency than beta, these brain waves help increase cognitive enhancement, attention to detail, a sharper memory, and a different way of thinking, which is a sign of creativity.
Benefits of Binaural Beats
Binaural beats impact us by changing our brainwaves. That is why they are considered as a form of sound wave therapy too. However, you likely won’t be recommended this treatment by your doctor any time soon.
Also, binaural beats should not be relied upon to heal mental health problems. But, if you are looking for a quick bio-hack, you can try binaural beats and test their help with one or more of these benefits:
- Increased creativity and cognitive enhancement
- Reduced anxiety and improved mood
- Easier and faster entry into a meditative state
- Improved sleep
- Enhanced focus, attention, concentration and memory retention
If you find it as intriguing as I do and would like to try, you can listen to some beats at MyNoise.net the next time you’re doing something that requires your complete concentration. Or you can go to YouTube and search the word binaural. You will be surprised by the number of choices you will get.