What are binaural beats?
The word “binaural” means relating to or used by both ears. "Binaural beats" describes a change in brain activity while listening to two slightly different tones in stereo. The brain hears a beating tone at the rate of the difference between the tones, not the actual tones themselves. This phenomenon entrains the brain into different brainwave states and can produce a range of beneficial results.
Types of binaural beat tones and their effects:
Delta: Deep Sleep, Pain Relief, Cortisol Reduction
Theta: Lucid Dreaming, Trance States, Meditation, Creativity
Alpha: Stress Reduction, Positive Thinking, Relaxed Focus
Beta: Concentration, Critical Thinking
Can you offer evidence that this works?
Binaural Beats were introduced to the scientific community by biophysicist Gerald Oster in the 1970s. In recent years there has been a wave of NIH sponsored research that supports the idea that binaural beats change the brain’s state.
A study from the US National Library of Medicine titled 'The impact of binaural beats on creativity' suggests “they (binaural beats) might impose some temporal structure on neural processes and thereby reduce cortical noise (Karino et al., 2006), which again may make task-specific processes that rely on neural communication and/or synchronization more reliable.”
Another study from the Journal of Neurophysiology titled 'Neuromagnetic responses to binaural beat in human cerebral cortex' demonstrates the impact of binaural beats on brainwaves, stating "The fields showed small amplitudes; however, they were strong enough to be distinguished from the noise accompanying the recordings. Spectral analyses of the magnetic fields recorded on single channels revealed that the responses evoked by binaural beats contained a specific spectral component of BB frequency, and the magnetic fields were confirmed to represent an auditory steady-state response (ASSR) to binaural beat.”
How do I know I’m hearing binaural beats?
There's a consistent sound bed to each Binaural Dream session which is the binaural beat tone. You can confirm you can hear it by holding one side of your headset to one ear, observe the tone. Switch to the other side of your headset and hold it to the ear, you should hear a slightly different tone. Now put on the headset and listen to the tones in stereo. If you hear one beating tone, the binaural beats will be effective.
Focus on the ebb and flow of the tones and observe whatever comes to mind. The effects grow over time, but you could feel something after your first session. Binaural Dream is designed for exploration, try out different packs depending on time of day and what your personal goals are, and be mindful of how you feel before and after.
I don’t own nice headphones—can I still use Binaural Dream?
One of the steps in our audio mastering process is to confirm that the tones translate to ear buds. Of course, the quality of the sound will be better with good headphones.
Who made Binaural Dream?
All sessions are composed by Sanj, founder of Binaural Dream.
In the winter of 2017, I found myself in a doctor's office trying to figure out why I could barely muster the strength to get out of bed. I was working towards a big product launch, fueling anxiety filled days with cup after cup of coffee. The problem was the coffee had stopped working.
“You have seasonal affective disorder. Here’s a prescription for 20,000 IUs of vitamin D.”
The diagnosis wasn’t surprising. I was a California transplant still getting used to New York City winters.
“You also need to relax more. Maybe try meditation.”
Try meditation? I had been practicing mindfulness for years. However, deep down I knew what I really needed was medicine, but I was uncomfortable with the idea of taking drugs just to feel normal.
Like so many wellness seekers, I turned to YouTube for tips on relaxation and better sleep which is where I encountered binaural beats for the first time. It was an 8 hour track and it had a whopping 12 million views. I slept to the track and for the first time in months I awoke feeling rejuvenated. I repeated the session day after day and over time my life transformed. Unlike the guided meditations of so many meditation apps, the wordlessness of binaural beats were entrancing. Instead of listening to someone explain how to observe and clear the mind, my mind effortlessly followed the tones as thinking dissolved into feeling. I started producing binaural beats myself, crafting tones for maximum effect, using friends and family as guinea pigs. Astonishingly, I couldn’t find any system that presented binaural beats as a daily meditation practice. Binaural Dream is my attempt at sharing the range of benefits I’ve experienced with this powerful listening practice.
I started my career producing media and supporting researchers at SETI. It was during my time working at radio astronomy laboratories and recording music that I began contemplating reality through the lens of waves. After graduating from UC Berkeley with a degree in Astrophysics, I worked as a Sound Designer and Composer for a San Francisco based neuroscience game company. Since then, I have provided engineering and product oversight for dozens of web, mobile, and tablet applications. In 2018, I left my job at a Fortune 250 company to start DreamThink LLC, a company focused on building experiences that support wellness and spiritual growth.