The Ins and Outs of Brain Entrainment
Dr. Covington is a pioneer in the world of brain entrainment. He has successfully used this evidence based science with those with autism, ADHD, sensory integration issues, learning disabilities, cognitive impairments, maladaptive behaviors, neurological disorders, and pain management.
The science behind brainwave entrainment can be explained quickly and easily. To begin, let's start by understanding what "brainwaves" are. We all experience different states of mind each day: states such as sleep, focus, concentration, relaxation, or creativity, for example. Every state of mind has a unique electrical signature that can be detected in the brain. With the discovery of brainwaves came the discovery that electrical activity in the brain will change depending on what the person is doing. For instance, the brainwaves of a sleeping person are vastly different than the brainwaves of someone wide awake. Over the years, more sensitive equipment has brought us closer to figuring out exactly what brainwaves represent and with that, what they mean about a person's health and state of mind. Using specialized equipment, these waves (or frequencies) can be measured and recorded, allowing us to map what brainwaves are present during certain key states of mind or activities. "Brainwave entrainment" is the process of (typically) using audio and/or visual stimulation to actually change brainwave patterns.
By changing your brainwave patterns, you can actually recreate certain states of mind - again, such as sleep, focus, concentration, relaxation, or creativity. Usually, this works by listening to a particular brainwave pattern (a specific pulsed frequency, encoded in audio). The brain then mimics or follows (entrains) that pattern, and as a result, changes your state of mind.
Let's go a little in depth. Try striking a tuning fork, then putting a second tuning fork next to it. The second tuning fork starts vibrating at the exact same frequency as the first. This is a wonderful phenomenon in the world of science, and it's known as the Frequency Follow Response (FFR) - or entrainment. It's another way of saying: "Follow the leader!" The same thing happens with the brain. If you expose it to a certain frequency, your brainwaves will follow that frequency. This is called brainwave entrainment.
In other words, if your brain was exposed to a 10Hz frequency, your brainwave patterns would shift toward that frequency. In turn, that would bring about a state of calm, detached relaxation. That's what brainwave entrainment is: a method of influencing your brainwave patterns, and ultimately changing your state, on-demand.
Quick example: Brainwave readings (with an EEG machine) have shown that brainwaves of 2Hz occur when an individual is asleep. Dr. Covington can create special audio recordings, which contain an encoded 2Hz frequency. While listening to such audio, the brain naturally follows (entrains) toward that 2Hz frequency, lowering its brainwave patterns. That's "brainwave entrainment." The net result is that when listening to such an audio recording, you (the listener) will naturally fall asleep.
What Does the Research Say?
There is a plethora of research on brain entrainment.
- 7-Minute Relaxation
- Music written by Dr. F. Covington
Listen to a Sample
This is a short 10 Hz Alpha relaxation session, it is ideal as a seven minute vacation from daily worries. This session also use the protocol which alternate stimulation between the left and right ears, which is particularly useful for people who are hyperactive.
The use of this session is in a quiet, comfortable place, free of distraction, in a chair or lying down. After starting the session, close your eyes and relax. Headphones are required for this particular session, however, this does not apply to all of On Time Pediatrics brain entrainment sessions.