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What's a Brain Wave?

Wolfgang Schwarz wschwarz at zedat.fu-berlin.de
Sun Apr 11 17:45:13 EST 1999


Grushnik wrote:
> 
> "Gamma and theta waves" describe states which are easily recognisable
> by their waveform on their EEG. These states are occur in sleep.
> I've never heard of those brain synchronisation things.

ah, thanks. And can these states be induced by music/light of certain
frequencies?

Here are a few short extract of the manual of "Cool Edit" (certainly
the most popular shareware sample editor:
http://www.syntrillium.com/cooledit/index.html):

"With the Brainwave Synchronizer, you can modify stereo files to
produce sounds that when listened to with stereo headphones can put
the listener into any desired state of awareness. 
[...]  
In order to spatially encode the signal, either the left or right
channel is delayed so that the sounds will appear at each ear at
different times, tricking the brain into thinking they are coming from
either side.  When this is done at frequencies of 3Hz and above, the
brain will start synchronizing at the same frequency, increasing its
output of Delta, Theta, Alpha, or Beta frequencies."

There follows long descriptions about when to use which waveforms to
create what kind of experience. Amoung them even neurobiological
details:

"Using Alpha Synchronization (8Hz to 12Hz), expect similar increases
in neuro-chemical levels:
11% increase in Norepinephrin levels, 21% increase in Serotonin
levels,	25% increase in Beta-Endorphin levels.
[...]
Thirty patients had sessions in Theta (5 hz) and experienced
relaxation states of 80-100% after five minutes as well as improved
pain relief.  Eight patients had blood tests before and after the
sessions and showed improved beta-endorphin levels of 10-50%."

There are references to researches of D.J. Anderson, Dr. Tomio Hirai
and "Elmer and Alyce Green of the famous Menninger Institute".

What do you think about that?

Wolfgang.



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