Binaural Beats

The brain produces very small rhythmic electrical pulses which are called brainwave patterns. These patterns can be observed using electroencephalograph (EEG) scanning equipment. Brainwaves are measured in cycles per second (Hz) and are produced by different areas of the brain throughout the day and night.

Gamma Waves
40 – 70 Hz are associated with higher mental functioning including, perception, intelligent problem solving, self awareness, compassion as well as emotional responses such as happiness and fear.

Beta Waves
13 – 40 Hz are known to be predominant during periods of concentration, activity, anxiety and arousal.

Alpha Waves 
7 – 13 Hz are linked to creativity and the state of conscious relaxation and calmness.

Theta Waves
4 – 7 Hz are associated with right-brain and subconscious insightful thinking, deep relaxation and mental imagery as well as meditation and REM sleep.

Delta Waves
0.5 – 4 Hz occur during periods of deep dreamless sleep and are linked to healing, recovery and pain relief.

Entrainment
The brain can be stimulated by sounds which have a rhythmic pulse matching the frequency range of specific brainwaves. This process is known as entrainment and has been shown to be very effective in producing the desired therapeutic states associated with each type of brainwave. It is a technique with roots in ancient practices such as shamanic drumming or the use of gongs, bells and chanting in meditation and it is now the subject of much scientific research.

Binaural Tones
When two sounds with slightly different frequencies are heard simultaneously the sounds combine to form a rhythmic pulse knowns as a binaural tone or binaural beat. The frequency of the pulse depends on the difference in frequencies of the two original sounds – if the first sound is 400Hz and the second is 380Hz the resulting binaural tone will have a frequency of 20Hz.

Binaural tones can be used very effectively to entrain brainwave patterns by targeting frequencies usually within the Alpha, Theta and Delta ranges. They can be used as pure tones, or embedded within ambient music, natural sounds such as ocean waves, or within different kinds of noise. The entrainment process works best using headphones but can also be experienced using stereo speakers – make sure your ears are the same distance from each speaker!

Side Effects
Binaural beats can be used by most people with no risk of any harmful side effects, however there are specific issues where caution is required when using this technology.

Seizures & Mental Illness: People with an existing medical history of mental illness or epilepsy should not use binaural beats due to the risk that the process of entrainment can trigger seizures. It is also not recommended to use this therapy with children as they can be more prone to seizures even when there is no previous history of epilepsy.
Pregnancy: Binaural beats are not recommended for children for reasons given above and the same advice and considerations should apply to the un-born baby. It is very unlikely that binaural beats would cause any ill effects to a pregnancy but it is advisable to be cautious and avoid to brainwave entrainment at this time.
Heart Problems: Changing brainwave patterns can affect the rhythm of your breathing and heartbeat. This is usually beneficial and therapeutic but anyone who has irregular heartbeats or a pacemaker should get medical advice before using binaural beats.
Operating Machinery: Binaural beats, in common with other therapies such as hypnosis and meditation, can bring about a deeply relaxed, hypnotic mind state. It should therefore never be used whilst driving or operating machinery or when undertaking any vital task that needs close attention.

Binaural Beats Collections