How sound healing soothes a busy mind

Have you heard of sound healing?

Stress and sleep | Essential Oils

Cheryl Vincelette
Audrey Sckoropad
@AVogel_ca


16 May 2022

Wellness is more than eating well and exercising, and we know it. I find that there are an array of components that have an effect on our wellbeing. Using sound as a wellness tool can be great and easily adaptable to any lifestyle.

What is sound healing?

In short, it's a practice that uses vibrations (vocal or instrumental-like gongs, Tibetan singing bowls and tuning forks) in order to relax the mind and body, while listening to the sounds consciously and mindfully.

The principles of sound therapy

Sound therapy was used by the ancients, and has undergone a period of re-discovery and is now being poised to reveal intricacies of healing at a cellular and physiological level. The most important aspect of sound healing is resonance, a word with several layers. In the context of humans, resonance can be described as the frequency of vibration that is natural to a specific organ or body system (such as the heart or the digestive system). This innate frequency is known as the prime resonance.

As for cells, they emit sound frequencies depending on their metabolism processes. There is also an interaction between the sound frequencies at a cellular level and those imposed by the environment the cells are in, including sound healing devices.

The concept of resonance implies the absorption of the sound and/ or harmonics at a cellular level. In sound healing, it is said that the resonance of the frequencies engage with negatively imprinted cells to re-harmonize them. An example of a disruption at a cellular level is said to have possibly been a result of a trauma, toxic substances, pathogens and/ or long exposures to noise pollution.

Sound and well being

The World Health Organization has said that noise pollution is "one of the most important environmental risks to health" and a promoter of heart disease, mental health disorders, and other stress-associated conditions. As much as certain sounds have the ability to unsettle us, it is also true that some have the power to soothe us.

Modern-day life can be overly stimulating and stressful, if you've tried other ways of relaxing, you might want to try this. In fact, some people find it less challenging than meditation because the sound keeps their mind occupied, making it easier to enter into deep states of calm. According to research from Mona Lisa Chanda and Daniel J. Levitin [Department of Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec] the best sound therapy instruments are more effective than meditation.

Sound healing instruments

Different instruments are used to create sound frequencies during sound healing sessions.

First, there is the hammered dulcimer, a percussion instrument that is a lot like a piano or a harp but is played with a drum.

Gongs are some of the oldest instruments used for sound meditations of Buddhism. They create deep and resonant sounds that are easy to meditate on.

There are also wind chimes, or koshi, a sort of wind chime that is specifically tuned used in sound healing. Many people hang wind chimes outside their home for their pleasant and soothing sound.

The singing bowl is probably one of the most popular ones. This sound healing instrument is tuned to the same frequencies produced from the sound "Om", which is said to be one of the best mantras for healing.

Where to start

There are sounders (sound healing practitioners) that offer sessions much like a yoga class in which you lay on a yoga mat, during which they use toning, chanting or vibrations to create sound frequencies. I must say the experience is quite pleasant, grounding and soothing for having gone to one myself.

If attending a session isn't what you're looking for, there are other methods of using sounds to bring a sense of calm to your mind and spirit. First of all, you could use your own voice and repeat chants or mantras. Also, small Tibetan bowls are nowadays easily accessible. Some are as small as the palm of your hand and easy to bring wherever. It only takes a few strikes of the mallet onto the bowl to experience the ripples of its sound. For an easier way to listen to sounds without having to actively participate in the making of it, you can listen to binaural beats.

Binaural beats are an auditory illusion caused by listening to two tones of slightly different frequency, one in each ear.

The difference between those two frequencies is the binaural beat; which is a pulse in the brain that the conscious mind is unaware of. For example, if your left ear receives a frequency of 20Hz and your right ear receives 10Hz, your brain perceives a binaural beat of 10 Hz, (Alpha brain waves).

Another option is to take advantage of music that promotes a relaxed alpha state in the brain such as classical music.

Taking a moment

Next time you feel stressed out by the mental load of whatever is going on in your life, why not enjoy a pause and listen to the frequencies of sounds.

I like to use the A.Vogel Relax Spray when I feel overwhelmed and anxious; it is a powerful combination of Passion flower, Lemon balm and Zinc. Passion flower is used in Herbal Medicine to help relieve restlessness and/or nervousness.

Then, I drink a glass of water, run a warm bath or shower, add few drops of lavender essential oil (has a calming and soothing effect) or even a bath bomb or bath salts, press play on a binaural beat or singing bowl track, sip on a warm cup of tea and simply close my eyes and let the sounds bring me to a space of peace and calm.

Expect nothing and experience everything.

Sources

https://www.medicinanarrativa.eu/sound-therapy-and-well-being-some-scientific-studies
https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/wellness-trends-science-of-sound
https://elemental.medium.com/you-might-be-losing-your-hearing-and-you-dont-even-know-it-b621f6b4aadd
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5871151/
http://www.downloads.imune.net/medicalbooks/Neurochemistry%20of%20music.pdf

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