In today's world, mental and physical pressure is something we are all facing down to the core. To keep up with the world’s spirit and fire up our day-to-day confidence, it is always important to heal along the process. If you are like us, then I’m sure you are looking for a way by which you can heal yourself with the help of sound. Sure !! some sounds are amazing and calming like the sound of the ocean waves or soothing like that of wind chimes. But there are also those irritating sounds, like that of a traffic jam or that unforgivable alarm which you just keep forgetting to switch off the previous night. So, can sound actually heal you? Let’s find out
Sound healing is the practice of using sound vibrations to relax your mind and body. It is a treatment done with both passive and participatory experience.Sound healing involves you to lay down peacefully with your eyes closed while slowing your breath, which is the passive aspect of it. This enables you to become a receiver of sound by being more open and aware of the sounds that come in, which would be the participatory aspect of it. Sound helps create the pathway to this place of stillness the same as a mantra helps you to arrive at the still point of meditation.
Sound was never invented or discovered, but something which is innate to us all. Sound can affect us especially psychologically in many ways. Hearing is one of your primary senses of warning. Even a simple sudden sound can create an alert in you and increase your stress hormone, thereby increasing your heart rate and breathing pattern. For centuries sound healing has been used as a source of therapy to cure many ailments.
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A sound healing procedure, such as sound baths, helps facilitate various shifts in our brainwaves with the help of sound vibrations. These vibrations synchronises our fluctuating brainwaves by providing a constant and stable frequency. This synchronisation helps us to shift down our brainwaves from a conscious state (beta state) to a more relaxed conscious state (alpha state). As we move forward, the brainwaves slowly move into a meditative state (theta state) and finally into a sleeping state (delta state) which is when your healing starts. Sound healing then mildly diffuses your innermost tensed thoughts by soothing them in the flow of the vibration, relieving you from overstressing them.
Related article: Effects of Music on the Brain
Most people consider both sound therapy and sound healing to be the same, but technically there is a small difference here. Sound healing is actually just a part of sound therapy and is taught as one of the components in sound therapy. Sound healing uses specific frequencies that are said to heal the body, while sound therapy uses a cacophony of frequencies that trigger an emotional response.
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There are different types of effective sound healing techniques. Although there are still a lot of studies required to find the effectiveness of each method, studies have shown binaural beats, tuning fork therapy, vibrational sound therapy, and music healing are four of the most common and effective sound healing techniques.
Binaural beats is a sound healing technique that uses two slightly different tones, played in each ear at the same time. The lower-level beats support deep sleep patterns, meditation, and relaxation, while the higher-level beats support focus and attention. The tones are so similar that the listener perceives them as one and channels into it.
Tuning fork therapy is a sound healing technique that applies pressure to different parts of the body, much similar to an acupuncture experience. The sound healing frequencies emitted from the tuning forks stimulate the same central points targetted by acupuncture. Tuning forks can reduce pain and release tension, creating a balanced body and mind.
Vibrational sound therapy is a sound healing technique that uses low-frequency vibrations to increase cellular movement. This results in higher energy levels, increased mobility, and reduced pain and inflammation. It is particularly beneficial for those with Parkinson’s, autism, migraines, muscle cramps, and cerebral palsy.
Research shows that music can improve stress levels as well as bring many benefits to the brain depending on the type of music listened to. This type of sound healing technique uses music made from low-frequency vibrations to improve focus, motivation, stress, pains, and much more.
Related article: Effects of Music on the Brain
By now you might have realised that sound healing is more about listening to the right sounds to soothe your mind and that instruments would just be an aid in the process. To confirm this, we spoke to 10 prominent sound therapists and they confirmed the same. They also revealed that each therapist used a different instrument or technique mostly. Based on this and a study from the British academy of sound therapy, the top 5 instruments used for sound healing are Voice, Gongs, Himalayan Singing Bowls, Drums, and Crystal Singing BowlsWe have an in-depth conversation about these instruments, you can read it by clicking here
A 20-year sound research revealed that sound and music can be effective healers for a range of mental, emotional, and even physical ailments, and has been a valuable treatment for several conditions such as:Depression, anxiety disorders, PTSD, dementia, autism spectrum disorders, people with learning difficulties, those with behavioral and psychiatric disorders, sleep disorders, aches, and pains, some cancersOther widely known benefits of sound healing are Reduced stress, fewer mood swings, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, better pain management, reduced risk of strokes and coronary artery diseaseImproved sleep
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Sound healing is beneficial for those facing hearing reduction as well. Sound healing is said to train and expand the use of residual hearing.It has also been described as a workout for your ears and could increase hearing capabilities. That being said, more research is needed to completely confirm if people facing hearing issues (reduction) can benefit in the same way or better.
If you wish to not visit a specialist, you can definitely try sound healing yourself at home. All you have to do is add some relaxing music or play a guided meditation track while enjoying a home spa. Alternatively, you can also instead add a bedtime sound therapy track routine which will help you relax and drift away.
Related article: Why Do Some Sounds Feel So Good?
Sound healing can help you better achieve hearing wellness by soothing your mind with the beauty of sound vibrations and harmony. The best way to do this is by approaching a sound therapist, although you can try a few sound healing practices at home as well. The best form of approaching sound healing on a day-to-day basis is to make it part of your lifestyle by choosing the places you go to with sounds that complement your interest. This is what Mumbli aims to provide. You can access Mumbli’s certified for sound venues by clicking here
University of Sussex(March 30, 2017) - It's true: The sound of nature helps us relaxBritish academy of sound therapy - Top 5 instruments used in Sound TherapyNational Library of Medicine (2015) - A Sound Therapy-Based Intervention to Expand the Auditory Dynamic Range for Loudness among Persons with Sensorineural Hearing Losses: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Clinical TrialNational library of Medicine (2016) - Effects of Singing Bowl Sound Meditation on Mood, Tension, and Well-being: An Observational StudyMatteo Nunner (2017) - SOUND THERAPY AND WELL-BEING: SOME SCIENTIFIC STUDIESScience for environmental policy (2015) - How sounds affect our state of mind