What Are Brainwaves?
Your brain is a wonderful & complex organ.
In fact, the brain is so complex that doctors are still in the process of learning all the intricacies of how it works. By now technology, medicine, and clinical study have given us an excellent idea of how the brain functions.
The brain contains billions of cells known as neurons, which generate and convey electrical impulses that communicate with each other: this process is where brain activity comes from. Every thought, impulse, & other function is the result of your neurons communicating with each other in this manner.
Doctors and scientists are able to detect, analyze, and monitor your brain activity via high-tech medical testing equipment (like an EEG to name an example). The overall electrical activity generated by your brain tends to follow a pattern that is wavelike in nature. For this reason, the total sum of your brain’s neurological function is known as your brainwave pattern.
Different Brainwaves for Different Activities
Most people are not aware that a healthy human brain regularly produces and facilitates a number of different brainwave patterns, all day, every day. Each of these is associated with a separate electrical frequency, as well as a different state of consciousness. Each state is also appropriate for different types of activity. For instance, there is one frequency that is optimal for periods of deep sleep while there are others for learning, creativity, the completion of daily duties, and so forth.
It’s also important to note that healthy human brain activity cycles through the various states of consciousness according to pre-set patterns. These patterns can be either healthy and optimal or unhealthy and detrimental. The stressors and stimuli associated with today’s busy, modern lifestyles can throw one’s normal brainwave pattern progression horrendously out of whack.
This can, in turn, cause all sorts of additional problems including but not limited to brain chemistry imbalances, stress-related illness, and other biological malfunctions. If left untreated, even more issues could result. Stress, lack of sleep, and other such problems have been linked to the development of cancer, depression, heart disease, and countless other problems.
A Look at the Different Types of Brainwaves
Generally speaking, our brainwaves fall into one of four main frequency patterns, first discovered and categorized by researchers in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Let’s take a closer look at each of these, as well as the biological functions and states of consciousness associated with each.
Beta Waves: Beta waves, associated with a frequency range of around 13-60 Hz, are the type of brainwaves generated by our brains when we are fully awake & alert. Our brains generate beta waves when we are thinking actively, problem-solving, engaging in productive activity, or actively communicating with others. Beta waves are also associated with states of high alert such as fear or agitation, and too much time in this state can lead to many problems.
Alpha Waves: Alpha waves, associated with frequency levels of around 7-13 Hz, are the type of brainwave our brains produce when we become relaxed. Generally speaking, alpha waves are produced when we’re super calm, but still very much aware of what’s going on around us. They can be associated with unwinding in a stress-free environment after work, light meditating, or engaging other forms of quiet contemplation.
Theta Waves: Theta waves are produced when our brains begin to calm down to an even greater degree and are associated with states of reduced consciousness. Theta frequencies are covered by a range of between 4-7 Hz. We produce these during light sleep or dozing, deep meditation, profound visualization, hypnosis-related states, and drowsiness.
Delta Waves: Delta waves are the type of waves produced when we’re actually unconscious or asleep. Frequencies here range between 0.1-4 Hz. In addition to deep, regenerative sleep, this state is a key contributor to immune system function, and a person’s overall physical health.
The Roles These States Play in Our Lives
We spend the great majority of our waking hours in the beta state, as that’s the optimal level of brain activity for most of our functions. We gather and process information best while in the beta state. It’s where we are when we’re being productive at work, being active, interacting with our loved ones, and performing complicated tasks of any kind.
Being able to reduce brain activity to the alpha, theta, and delta states helps minimize the effects of stress, facilitating the release of compounds like endorphins, dopamine, HgH, melatonin, serotonin, & reducing bad chemicals like cortisol. Brainwave entrainment helps people to be creative, experience pleasure, feelings of a greater sense of well-being, learning, memory, and limitless other benefits.
Basic Brainwave Benefits – Alpha, Theta, Delta
How Brainwave States Affect Your Life
Your brain has nerve cells that fire electrical signals and oscillate in distinctive arrangements called brainwave patterns. These patterns are closely connected to your thoughts, emotions, moods, biological chemistry, everything you do, and really, everything you are.
Because Brainwave Wizard audio guides you into different brainwave states (and various states of meditation), it is helpful to understand the different frequencies and how they contribute to your state of consciousness. Since most of us spend our days in the beta state, Brainwave Wizard sound technologyexcludes the beta brainwave frequencies, and includes only those responsible for the most beneficial brainwave states, physically and metaphysically: alpha, theta, and delta.
Beta Brainwave Frequencies: 13-40 Hz
- The beta brainwave is the predominant frequency when we are fully awake and alert.
- Active awareness directed to the outer world.
- Beta brainwaves are present during stress, paranoia, worry, fear, and anxiety.
- They are also present during hunger, depression, irritability, and moodiness.
- Insomnia is the result of producing excessive beta brainwaves.
- Associated with excessive “mental chatter” and self-destructive impulses.
- Too much time in the beta state weakens the immune system.
- Beta brainwaves make up much of our conscious mind.
Alpha Brainwave Frequencies: 7-13 Hz
- The alpha state is where meditation and relaxation begins.
- We start to encounter the wealth of effortless creativity flowing just beneath our conscious state.
- Awake but deeply relaxed.
- Studies have shown the alpha state has been associated with “peak performance.” Elite athletes produce alpha brainwaves prior to concentrated performance (shooting a free throw, hitting an important golf shot). Amateur athletes produce more of the anxious beta brainwaves.
- In the alpha state we learn, process, memorize and recollect large sums of information fast and with peak effectiveness.
- Highly creative people have been shown to have “bursts” of alpha brainwaves when they have good ideas.
- Alpha brainwaves are thought to make the brain “act young” again.
- In the alpha state fears, habits, and phobias begin to melt away.
- Alpha brainwaves bring an effortless sense of comfort, peace, and harmony.
- Best for “super learning”.
- The alpha state is the first layer of our subconscious mind.
- A gateway to deeper states of awareness.
Theta Brainwave Frequencies: 4-7 Hz
- Theta brainwaves become prominent when we go deeper into meditation and relaxation – almost trance-like.
- Here, brain activity decelerates to the threshold of the sleep stage.
- One of the more indescribable and wonderful realms we can explore.
- The theta state produces flashes of creative visualization through vivid imagery.
- In this state we feel much more open and connected to other people.
- People often report a feeling of floating while producing theta brainwaves.
- Theta brainwaves are thought to bring out a person’s dormant extrasensory perception (ESP) skills.
- The theta state heightens problem-solving skills.
- Having dominant theta brainwaves are correlated with insight and intuition.
- Theta brainwaves bring inspired thought and increased motivation.
- Sometimes long-forgotten memories come to the surface.
- Children have strong theta brainwaves, which helps to explain their superior ability to learn.
- Theta is briefly experienced as we climb out of the depths of delta upon waking, or when falling asleep.
- The theta state is the deeper sub-conscious to super- conscious part of the mind.
Delta Brainwave Frequencies: 0-4 Hz
- The deepest level of meditation.
- The delta state is associated with “no thinking” during deep, dreamless sleep.
- Delta brainwaves are very rewarding.
- Delta is said to be the entrance to non-physical states of reality.
- A crucial state for renewal, healing, and rejuvenation.
- The immune system strengthens in the delta state.
- The delta state is the unconscious/super-conscious part of our mind.
- Many scientists believe this state to be the most beneficial.
Brainwaves During Meditation
Meditation, practiced for millenia, is coming to the forefront of science, especially neuro-science, in a very big way. Tibetan Buddhist Monks’ brainwave patterns, during their meditation sessions, are of particular interest to doctors & scientists. What is so special about the brains of advanced meditators?
During Meditation, Prefrontal Cortex Gamma Brainwaves Intensify
The benefits of meditation, at least in metaphysical terms, have always been understood by those with the highest levels of meditative experience, science is now able to pinpoint which parts of the human brain are the most active, and to what degree.
One particular part of the brain, the Pre-Frontal Cortex, intensifies its Gamma brainwave production (known best for extreme concentration) during meditation. The Pre-frontal cortex is known for:
- Abstract Thinking
- Regulating Behavior
- Decides what is right and wrong
- Regulates urges (sexual & emotional)
- Great Implications on consciousness, personality, and general intelligence
- Positive Emotions
Alpha Brainwaves proliferate during meditation
To enter a meditative state, brain wave activity must shift through a number stages. The first of these states, Alpha, is known to elicit changes in the autonomic nervous system, bringing a natural state of calmness. As a result, blood pressure and heart rate are lowered, leading to a reduction in stress hormones, namely, cortisol.
During Meditation Theta Brainwaves Multiply
The second stage the brainwaves move into during meditation, Theta, is said to unlock higher insight and untapped wisdom. Theta brain waves induce deep relaxation, enabling creativity, memorization and problem solving skills. In “Highway Hypnosis” for instance, drivers are able to automatically drive from home to work while in the theta state, that is to say, without a recollection of actually performing the skills that are essential for driving. Plainly, skills that have become second nature are brought to the surface by the theta state.
Delta Brainwaves synchronize during meditation
Another occurring brain wave pattern during meditation are Delta brainwaves, the slowest of all brainwaves. Unlike theta which is a dreamy state, delta brain waves occur only in deep, dreamless sleep. Highly advanced meditation practitioners are able to use willpower to summon delta waves, readily tapping into the subconscious and unconscious layers of the mind, allowing for the integrated programming of newly learned skills during sleep.
What is Brainwave Entrainment?
Brainwave Entrainment is the brain’s electrical reaction to rhythmic stimulation (usually via pulses of sound or light), inducing what is scientifically known as “Cortical Evoked Response”. Under stimulation, brainwave patterns have a tendency to tune into, or synchronize with the presented entrainment light and/or sound, in the same way that pendulum clocks will begin to sync together when placed in proximity.
How Does Rhythmic Stimulus Induce Positive Mental States?
When a stimulus is introduced to the brain (for instance sound), its rhythm is replicated in the brain as electrical impulses. If the rhythm is precise enough, the natural brainwave patterns will mimic the sound stimulus, also known as Frequency Following Response (FFR). FFR is closely related to mental states and brainwave patterns, measured as gamma, beta, alpha, theta, and delta, respectively. For instance, 4Hz, a delta brainwave, is the frequency of sleep. Thus, when a precisely tuned 4Hz tone is introduced to your brain, it will induce the sleep state. The same principle applies to meditation, concentration, creativity, focus, or any other brainwave state that you would like to entrain.
The Science, Merits, and Implications of Brainwave Entrainment
Experimentation in this particular field of neuroscience has revealed that an individual is able to create in the mind the proper conditions for learning, meditation, relaxation, countering negative emotions, among countless other useful applications. The implications of brainwave entrainment are immense.
The Benefits of Alpha Brainwaves
Discovered by Austrian Psychiatrist Hans Berger in 1908, Alpha brainwaves cycle 8 to 13 times per second, a good bit slower than beta brainwaves. While considered a part of a group of brainwaves, the Alpha brainwave has one distinct trait that makes it stand out from its siblings – it appears and disappears while going through our brain. Sometimes alpha waves are present, sometimes they are not. The disappearance of the Alpha brainwave usually occurs when someone is asleep or experiences heightened emotions such as fear or anger. This brainwave only appears whenever a person is awake and relaxed, a one-of-a-kind distinction among other types of brainwaves.
How Important Are Alpha brainwaves?
Although most experts will tell you that people can get through the day without the production of Alpha brainwaves, that doesn’t mean there won’t be any repercussions. For people who have suppressed production of these brainwaves, they can end up developing anxiety disorders and other stress-related diseases, which can lead to the weakening of their immune system.
Aside from anxiety and stress, the lack of Alpha brainwaves can hamper how your body performs. If you’re the type who loves to engage in sports, reduced production of this brainwave can affect your athletic prowess, making it difficult for you to perform at your best.
Lastly, failure of your brain to be in the alpha state can affect your creativity. If you happen to be in an industry where you need to be creative, it can make it hard for you to come up with new ideas or develop innovative concepts for your work.
Benefits People Get From Alpha brainwaves
Now that you’ve been made aware of the pitfalls of not having enough Alpha brainwave activity, here are some of the benefits:
Improved Immune System
Regular production of Alpha brainwaves ensure that your immune system stays in top shape. This is made possible since they’re able to keep the body relaxed, thus reducing the chances for stress to build up. As a result, your body doesn’t end up producing harmful chemicals which can harm your immune system. By keeping anxiety and stress at bay, Alpha brainwaves reduce your chances of having to deal with stress-induced or anxiety-related sickness.
A Positive State Of Mind
You’ve probably heard people talk about the power of “positive thinking.” While some might tell you that it’s based on faith or strong belief, research has shown that there’s a third ingredient that helps you get that frame of mind – Alpha brainwaves. The rhythm produced by this brainwave – especially those that hit the frequency of 10 Hz – is said to help in the enhancement of one’s mood and thoughts, enabling one to experience and enjoy a positive state of mind.
Better Emotional Stability
At one point in time, you’ve been told to keep your emotions in check. With regular production of Alpha brainwaves, you won’t have to worry about losing your cool, always keeping a perfect mental balance.
Aids In Problem Solving
Have you ever found yourself in a tough situation where you couldn’t think of a way out? If you have, it might be due to a lack of Alpha brainwave activity. It’s been proven that increased production of these brainwaves allows people to deal with and solve problems at a faster rate and with far fewer difficulties. This is made possible thanks to the brainwave’s ability to get rid of “mental blocks” that prevent solving the problem at hand.
Relaxes Both The Body And The Mind
One of the many things people yearn for is to achieve a relaxed state for both their mind and body. Alpha brainwaves allow this to flow naturally, slowing down the brain’s overactive thought process, allowing a more relaxed, tension free existence.
Alpha brainwaves play a key role in ensuring that your body and mind function at their best.
The Benefits of Delta Brainwaves
Deemed as the “the most relaxing brainwave”, delta waves are at their most active when you’re not- they appear when you’re asleep and reduce your overall sense of awareness. Associated with the sub-conscious to unconscious parts of the mind, delta brainwaves are said to be the opening to non-physical states of reality. As a result, this brain state is most often seen while one is in very deep meditation or dreamless sleep.
Because delta brainwaves appear during a state of very deep relaxation or unconsciousness, it is the slowest brainwave frequency among all four brainwave states. Measuring just 0-4 Hz, these waves have the highest amplitude.
Why Some Scientists Consider Delta Brain Waves To Be The Most Beneficial Of All Brain Waves
Because Delta brainwaves appear while you sleep, they offer a number of benefits, particularly for the healing and strengthening of the body. Just a few of these benefits:
One benefit of increased Delta waves are the production of 2 anti-aging hormones: DHEA and melatonin. Capable of preventing you from looking well beyond your age, keeping your appearance youthful and exuberant, DHEA & melatonin are very import. In addition, delta brainwaves are said to suppress the production of cortisol, a hormone generated when a person is stressed. By keeping cortisol at bay, it is possible to slow down the aging process.
A Deeper Empathy For Others
People who have a deep compassion and empathy for others have more Delta brainwaves. Easily reading people’s feelings, increased social intelligence, avoiding conflicts, and relating to people more are said to all be characteristics of those in the delta state.
Tranquility and Harmony
Regular meditation enables a peaceful state of mind, with the attainment of bliss a wonderful side effect. Ever wondered why people who meditate always look so peaceful? That’s because they’re able to generate a huge amount of delta brainwaves.
Mind and Body Rejuvenation
Delta brainwaves, mimicking the sleep state, allow you to rejuvenate both your mind and body, regenerating the needed chemicals you up use while awake. Reaching a deep level of relaxation, you can easily rejuvenate your body and mind, ridding them of stress.
Release of Human Growth Hormones
During puberty, Human Growth Hormones, or HGH, played an important role in helping increase height and weight. Not as plentiful once you become an adult, HGH is still very important for maintaining body strength and decreasing bodyfat. Attaining the delta brainwave state allows one to see continuous production of this vital hormone.
Establishes A Connection With The Body’s Spirit
Accessing a more relaxed and peaceful state of mind with delta brainwaves, a spiritual awakening is increasingly possible. Gurus believe that the body & spirit connect when the conscious & subconscious minds merge, as in the delta brainwave state. This results in an ever-increasing internal awareness plus a deeper connection and understanding of the spirit.
Stronger Immune System
The more rest you get, the stronger your immune system gets. With the delta brainwave state, health improves on all levels- including an extra immunity to sickness.
The Benefits of Gamma Brainwaves
Have you ever found yourself “in the zone” at work or while playing sports? If you have, you can thank your Gamma brainwaves for that. Studies have shown that Gamma brainwaves allow the brain to attain optimal performance, enabling a person to be at their best both physically and mentally. Connecting all the information coming from the different parts of the brain, Gamma brainwaves are very important. How is this done? You can thank the high speed frequency for that.
Despite having a low and nearly unnoticeable amplitude, Gamma brainwaves have the fastest frequency, measuring from 25 Hz to 100 Hz. As a result, they traverse from the thalamus – were they originate – to the front of the brain, before returning. This process is very fast, allowing these waves to be seen in nearly every part of the brain.
What Gamma Brainwaves Can Do For You
Because of what they can do, it’s important for the brain to be able to produce Gamma brainwaves at a healthy level. To give you an idea of what they can offer, here are some of the benefits you can get from these brainwaves.
Gamma brainwaves play a big role in helping a person remember past events. If the frequency of these brainwaves hit 40 Hz or above, you’ll get to enjoy better recall and an enhanced memory. For those with this much production, expect better performance at work or at school.
Higher Level Of Compassion
Studies have shown that people who meditate are more compassionate than those that don’t. Aside from having a deeper understanding of the things around them, the main reason behind this is that if a person meditates regularly, that person’s brain produces more Gamma waves, thus increasing tolerance and level of compassion.
Enhanced Thought Processing
We all have different thought processes, with some being more advanced than others. By producing more than the regular amount of Gamma brainwaves, your brain gets to operate more efficiently, allowing information to process quicker- enabling a deeper understanding of the things you’re trying to learn.
Gamma brainwaves aren’t just limited to helping you get into the zone; they also act as a natural anti-depressant. With regular production, these brainwaves can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, while improving happiness. People who meditate often not only achieve a higher level of compassion due to the increased production of Gamma brainwaves, it also creates the environment for a happy life.
Increase In Intellect
According to studies, people with Gamma brainwaves that hit a frequency of 40 Hz posses a higher I.Q. Would you like to increase your level of intelligence? Make sure that your brain produces abundant Gamma brainwaves (via exercise, meditation, brainwave entrainment). With regular production, you’ll be able to readily solve problems, have a clearer understanding of things, and process information more quickly.
With an increased production of Gamma brainwaves, your mind is able to improve the way you focus, making it easier to concentrate on one thought at a time. As a result, finishing whatever task you have set for yourself is much easier.
Being the highest of all four brainwaves, regular to increased production of Gamma brainwaves can help boost your energy levels, enabling peak performance, physically and mentally. This boost in energy level will also enable you to get through the day, keeping you from feeling tired and weary too soon.
The Benefits of Theta Brainwaves
Among the four dominant types of brainwaves, the Theta wave has earned the reputation of perhaps being the “most creative”. The dominant pattern when people are in the dream stages of their sleep, a person with increased Theta brainwaves during waking activity has a very high level of thinking and creativity. With a high amplitude and frequency of 4 Hz to 8 Hz, Theta waves are often dominant in the brain’s right hemisphere, which is also the hemisphere of highly-creative people. Here are some of the benefits you might enjoy with an increased Theta brainwave production:
Higher Level of Intuition
Trusting in your instinct isn’t as primal as you may think. In fact, your gut-instinct is derived from an increased production of Theta brainwaves, strengthening that powerful link to your higher self, making decisions and assessing problems a very natural and easy process.
Reduces Anxiety And Stress
Since Theta brainwaves keep a person relaxed, it helps in minimizing anxiety and stress, allowing you to slow down your overactive thought processes. As a result, you get to calm your mind and body more, reducing the chances of being affected by stress and/or anxiety.
Helps You Control Your Subconscious
While people have full control of themselves when they are conscious, it’s a whole different ballgame when it comes to dealing with their subconscious. However, with regular production of Theta brainwaves, you’re able to eliminate any emotional blockages you may have, allowing you to accept suggestions and ideas more, helping you re-program your brain to suit your needs.
Gives You The Ability to “Hyperfocus”
Hyperfocus occurs when a person is able to focus his or her thoughts on only one task at a time. Have you ever been “in the zone”? By increasing the production of Theta brainwaves, you’re able prevent any noise, distractions, or disturbances from keeping you from finishing the task at hand.
Promotes Better Language Learning And Development
For those who want to learn a new language, in addition to studying, Theta brainwave production can help you learn a new language at a faster rate. Students specializing in foreign languages are some of the people who stand to benefit from an increase in Theta waves.
Strengthens Your Immune System
Aside from being associated with sleep and focus, Theta brainwaves are also known to increase a person’s vitality by suppressing harmful hormones, while allowing the production of good ones into the body’s system. Stay young and healthy!
Helps Establish A Better Emotional Connection
Having a deeper understanding allows you to empathize and establish a better connection with others, done via the mind’s increased production of Theta brainwaves.
Creativity often comes when a person maintains a calm and relaxed state of mind, allowing you to maintain a relaxed attitude, resulting in a free flowing of ideas that can help you in your work or studies. Theta brainwaves ensure that you develop an enhanced mindset helping you perform better in all of your creative endeavors.
Theta brainwaves are able to improve both the physical and mental aspects of your body while allowing you to perform better and live much longer.
Find me on Facebook