The fastest way to make brainwave entrainment technology work for you on your path of spiritual development is to pull back ever so slightly once you realize you have reached the peak of your nervous system’s capacity to recover from the stimulus. Because your nervous system is like a sine wave, when it is about to go into its valley, you pull back just a little bit, thereby giving your nervous system, energetic system, and hormonal system enough room to pull out all of their recovery powers. This allows you to recover from stimulus more quickly, and then you get past the waning stage and back to the waxing stage, where you can start pouring on the juice a little bit more again.
Slower still are theta waves. Theta is best known as the brain wave state of dreaming sleep, but it is also associated with a number of other beneficial states, including increased creativity, some kinds of superlearning, increased memory abilities, visionary experiences, and what are called integrative experiences (where we make broadly-based positive changes in the way we see ourselves, others, or certain life situations).
So let’s start with the basics, and we can move on from there. An easier way to understand brainwave entrainment would be to think about how your brain gets entrained in real life, without the use of any technology. Have you ever heard a song on the radio that stuck into your mind throughout the day and maybe even the next one? Now think about a repeating sound, like the ticking of a clock – simply listening to it your brain starts producing alpha waves that match that tick-tack sound. Or have you ever been at a meeting when you immediately felt sleepy? That is because the majority of people in the room were feeling that same way and your brain simply matched the brain wave patterns they have been emanating. We can go on exemplifying this phenomenon, but the main point is that our brain is altering and adapting in direct response to what we hear, think, and see.
I have discussed these findings with my sister, and two nice which are professionals in the fields of psychology, and medicine respectively (my sister and older nice have vast experience on the psychology arena, and my younger nice is a pediatrician), and they all agree this therapy can be of a great benefit applied in conjunction with traditional self-improvement programs.
There are many advantages and disadvantages with binaural beats. One of the major advantages is hemispheric synchronization. Since both hemispheres are required to create the beat within the brain, this method is an excellent way to create greater harmony between areas of the mind typically functioning independently. Binaural beats are also known to have effective hypnotic and relaxing effects.
Chronic fatigue: Subjective improvements in energy level may be reported by those who increase stimulatory beta and gamma waves. Fast waves tend to be associated with higher levels of arousal. Low arousal is associated with chronic fatigue and may be exacerbated by slow brain waves (e.g. theta and delta). As of now there aren’t any studies that have analyzed various protocols for their effect on a person’s energy or arousal.
To summarize all this, we can see that the type of product you choose plays an important role in answering that question – “Can brainwave entrainment damage my brain?” My personal advice as a long-term user of the technology is to Be selective about what brainwave entrainment audios you download from the internet, and make sure to follow the instructions!
We’ll use Holosync® to place you in an alpha brain wave pattern, that of focus, concentration, and accelerated learning. You’ll become completely absorbed in whatever you’re reading—or, for that matter, in anything you do requiring focus and concentration. And, you’ll remain refreshed even after hours of concentration. Quietude™ will dramatically increase your productivity and learning ability.
While binaural beats are the most common technique we use for producing brainwave entrainment music, we do use other brainwave entrainment techniques such as isochronic tones, monaural beats and amplitude modulation. If these techniques have been used then you will find them mentioned in the written description of the music productions that include them. If not mentioned, then you can assume that binaural beats are the only brainwave entrainment technology in use.
To get a full answer you should really get in touch with the owner of the app, because it does really depend on how their track is constructed and how they intend it to work. I have one 50-minute sleep track which takes you down into delta (http://www.mindamend.com/shop/sleeping-and-dreaming/sleep-induction-isochronic-tones/) and that is designed to just get you to sleep, so you just let play until the end. If you played that track on repeat it might make you jump and wake you up, as the track begins at a higher frequency. I have another 8-hour sleep track which is meant to be played all throughout the night (http://www.mindamend.com/shop/sleeping-and-dreaming/deep-sleep-8-hour-sleep-cycle/). So it does depend on the individual track you are using.
A study that tested photic stimulation for reduction of poor behavior in ADHD children found that 15 sessions of photic stimulation between 12 Hz and 14 Hz resulted in behavioral change. This behavioral change was measured using the Achenbach Child Behavior Checklist – which accounted for not only the parent’s perspective, but self-reports from the children. Statistically it was stated that behavior improved up to 70% in the stimulation group compared to controls.
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Isochronic tones work just the same in delta as they do in alpha, theta and beta and they are widely used in the brainwave entrainment community to help people sleep. Like you, I’ve also seen some websites saying they don’t work in delta, but it’s a bit like the game of Chinese Whispers, where someone makes a comment and then after it gets passed around and shared a lot the message gets distorted and appears to be a fact. I don’t know of any scientific reason why they wouldn’t work in delta. I remember some people talking about this on a brainwave entrainment forum many years ago. They were saying they found isochronic tones a bit too abrupt for using to help them sleep and they preferred binaural beats, as they thought they were a more soothing sound. That was just a personal preference shared by a couple of prominent forum members at the time and some people then took that as a fact for everyone. That’s where I think that belief originated from.
Binaural beats were the first method discovered for brainwave entrainment and works by delivering tones of different audible frequencies to the two ears with the difference in frequency between the two tones being the frequency of entrainment. The difference in frequency between the two tones must be less than 30 hertz, and this resulting frequency is called a beat or the target frequency, and it is processed in a brain region called the olivary body. When listening to such tones with stereo headphones, the two hemispheres of the brain become synchronized at the target frequency.
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Binaural beats can be experienced in any float session you book. To this point in your floating practice you may, or may not, have heard of – or perhaps already experienced – binaural beats and their effective use of being a unique option/tool to listen to while in (or out of) the tank. But what exactly are binaural beats, how do they work and why choose to listen to them? All good questions, so here we go:
The program uses special ‘brainwave’ sounds to meditate for you. That means you don’t have to actively try to quieten your mind, stop fidgeting, or focus only on the meditation. And you don’t have to reschedule your day. Each session lasts just 12 minutes, and you only need to meditate a few times a week to reap the rewards. Just sit back and hit play.
Relaxation: There is already evidence that brainwave entrainment helps improve relaxation. In studies analyzing short-term stress and anxiety, significant improvements were noted. This has been verified by other studies that suggest brainwave entrainment enhances muscle relaxation in biofeedback and can help with pain reduction and migraine headaches. The relaxation-induced response of entrainment may be responsible for a variety of the benefits.
Changes in neural oscillations, demonstrable through electroencephalogram (EEG) measurements, are precipitated by listening to music, which can modulate autonomic arousal ergotropically and trophotropically, increasing and decreasing arousal respectively. Musical auditory stimulation has also been demonstrated to improve immune function, facilitate relaxation, improve mood, and contribute to the alleviation of stress. These findings have contributed to the development of neurologic music therapy, which uses music and song as an active and receptive intervention, to contribute to the treatment and management of disorders characterized by impairment to parts of the brain and central nervous system, including stroke, traumatic brain injury, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, cerebral palsy, Alzheimer's disease, and autism.