So, I’ve been seeing a new person for my psychological medications. The person, in question, is not a doctor, but a nurse practitioner, and genuinely cares about my mental well being than my last psychiatrist did. She has been trying to get me off certain medications that might actually have been doing more harm than good, and also trying to lower doses and find alternatives to some of the medications that I was currently taking.
So far, I like this. A lot.
My last psychiatrist did not seem to pay attention to my needs, and didn’t care about his patients. At least, that’s how it appeared to me.
The other thing I like, is that, as I said before, she is looking for alternatives to medications to help me. And, that is what I want to talk about.
I was introduced to meditation about a little less than one year ago to handle stress and find inner peace. I did it at that one class, and since then, I never thought twice about it. Plus, we all lead busy lives, and really, who has time to sit down and zone out?!
My nurse practitioner and I were discussing this, and, because she believes in the holistic approach to things than just assigning a medication to take care of stress, depression, mental disorders, and such, she introduced me into “binaural beat” meditation.
“Oh, ‘The Great Fartsupial’, how does binaural beats work?”
I’m glad you asked.
I won’t bore you with the history of it, I know you can easily wiki or google the shit out of that. The way binaural beats work is that two separate audio frequencies that are marginally different are sent through a listening device, like a set of headphones.
Trust me, it won’t work on a pair of computer speakers or any single speaker of any sort. The most effective device is a set of headphones.
Anyway, as the two different tones are being sent to each side of the headphones, your brain receives and processes a new frequency. For instance, if the left side of the headphones is producing a tone at 300 Hz and the right side of the headphones is producing a tone at 305 Hz, the resulting tone being compiled in the center of the brain is 5 Hz.
Now, here comes the interesting part. There are certain levels of binaural zones, and each have a different effect to your mind and body:
- Delta Zone (0.1-4 Hz) – This area of brainwave state produces deep sleep, pain relief, anti-aging (cortisol reduction/DHEA increase), healing, and access to the unconscious mind,
- Theta Zone (4-8 Hz) – This state encourages Rem sleep, deep relaxation/inner peace, meditation, creativity, hypnopompic and hypnagogic states,
- Alpha Zone (8-14 Hz) – This state induces relaxed focus, stress reduction, positive thinking, accelerated learning, willingness to effortlessly be engaged in activity and environment,
- Beta Zone (14-30 Hz) – The benefits of this state are focused attention (external stimuli), high-level cognition, analytical thinking and problem solving, stimulates energy and action, and finally
- Gamma Zone (30-100 Hz) – This level gives the user increased information processing, cognitive enhancement, memory recall, peak awareness and transcendental states.
Now, there are apps out there that will play just the certain binaural tone that you want, or loads of YouTube videos that either play just the tone, or play it in the background of relaxation music, and these videos can last anywhere from 30 minutes to 10 hours. I found one set of each level that was made by a group and the videos are about an hour or so long, and it’s just the tone. No distracting music, no commercials playing in the middle of a session.
I’ve been trying this out for about four days now. I started in the Delta Zone, and have moved to the Theta Zone. I’m sure being the skeptical person that I am, that some of this is believing in this and some of it is actual science. Either way, after a few days of Theta binaural beats, I have felt more relaxed around my family, and have had probably one of the more relaxing weekends (mentally) that I have had in quite some time. No bad thoughts, no anger issues, and just an all around calming feeling.
Is this for everybody? Am I the poster “man-child” for binaural brain wave therapy?
Not. At. All. Everybody needs to have their own way of healing and finding inner peace, whether it comes from medications, exercising, sex (yes please!), or what have you, but what I’m just trying to show is what at the moment is what is working for me, and thought I would share with anyone who is curious or reading my site and wants to know what other techniques are out there.
And, yes, if you google binaural beats, you will find tons of information out there, and tons of articles praising it, naysaying it and warning that it is harmful in certain ways or for certain lengths of time. Take away what you want to from it. It, so far, is helping me, and I will, of course, be the first to admit when it doesn’t work for me or I stop doing it for various reasons. But, for now, I am one with the beat.
And, I’m okay with that.
Namaste (that’s what they say, isn’t it?).
Some of the information I shared I ripped directly off of http://www.binauralbeatsmeditation.com/the-science/
Just so you know.