Here are 5 types of Sound Therapy that can help you heal. Whether you need some de-stressing, better sleep, emotional releasing, increased intuition or even a stronger spiritual connection, it’s possible that sounds can help you. But like everything, consult with your doctor if you have any pre-existing medical conditions (like high blood pressure or if you are pregnant) or any concerns on how this may impact your health.
Music Therapy can be administered by a trained therapist to improve physical, emotional and mental wellbeing. There has also been scientific research to link this to health benefits such as boosting the immune system, easing anxiety, reducing side effects of cancer therapy, helping with physical therapy and rehabilitation, aiding in pain relief and more (Harvard Health Publishing).
In some studies, music therapy in hospitals has been shown to be more effective than prescription drugs in reducing anxiety levels before surgery (www.healthline.com). Music Therapy can involve any or all of the following, depending on the person’s condition and interests:
- listening to music
- singing along to music
- moving to the beat of the music
- playing an instrument
Not only are tuning forks used in sound healing, they are also used in the medical profession. The Rinne Test is designed to test for hearing loss and can help to diagnose whether a patient is having problems with conducting sound waves. Doctors also use tuning forks as a type of x-ray where fractures can be identified by striking the tuning fork and placing the vibrating fork near the affected area.
Using the principle of everything being energy, tuning forks can be used to connect to our body’s natural frequencies with the vibrations of the sounds from the tuning fork travelling deep into our bodies. This stimulates and balances the body’s energy field and flow to promote healing.
Some of the benefits associated with Tuning Fork Therapy are:
- Tunes natural cycles of the body
- Unites passages, aids digestion
- Natural anti-inflammatory
- Increases bone density and promotes healing of strained muscle, tendon and ligaments
- Nervous system balanced
- Balance and homeostasis in the body
- Opens energetic pathways, alleviating stasis and relieving pain
- Relaxes muscle tension
- Keeps stress and anxiety balance
- Great for sound sleep
Sound baths normally have the participants in a lying down or reclined position, where sounds are made with one or more sound instruments creating soothing, overlapping vibrations. The sounds can be made with gongs (gong bath), crystal or Himalayan singing bowls, bells or other sound instruments. This form of sound healing is typically designed for relaxation, emotional release and pain relief, but similar to any sound therapy, the idea is to balance and restore the body’s frequencies at all levels.
Sound baths typically involve the accompaniment of a yogic or guided meditation, where you are led into deeper states of relaxation – entering into alpha and theta brain waves. These altered states of awareness are claimed to have many health benefits associated with:
- mind and body healing
- boosted immune system
- deep levels of relaxation
- intuition increase
- high levels of creativity
- advanced problem-solving skills
- improved long-term memory
- stronger emotional connection
In 1839, Physicist Heinrich Wilhelm Dove discovered that certain sounds had a notable influence on brain waves. And although there is no scientific evidence that listening to binaural beats can affect someone’s mood more so than other sound therapies, there are still claims that there are health benefits including relaxation, increased concentration, improved memory, focus and even suppression of pain.
Binaural beats have been described as a brainwave entrainment technology – when you listen to a sound with a certain frequency, your brain waves will then synchronise to that frequency.
So the theory is that these sounds can induce a state similar to that experienced in deep meditation. Depending on the range of frequencies you listen to will determine the benefits you will get, ranging from deep relaxation and induced sleep to increased concentration and alertness, problem-solving, and improved memory.
Chanting and Mantras
There has been much scientific research done on the positive effects that chanting mantras have on the brain. The Sanskrit word mantra literally means mind and tool, where you are using the tool of sound and vibration to bring peace and clarity to the mind. So the healing comes from beyond just the words and meanings cited in a mantra or heard in a guided meditation. It comes from the vibrational effects that these sounds have on the body – and when repeated over and over again, can have lasting and profound positive effects.
Some mantras can be done with a fixed number of repetitions where you may need to repeat the mantra, say 108 times, for a certain number of days. This is why you may see people holding a string of beads, or Mala, to keep count of the times the mantra has been repeated. And again, as with different sounds creating different frequencies or vibrations, there are mantras that cater to different requirements, such as Deity Mantras, Healing Mantras, Chakra Mantras, General Mantras, Enlightenment Mantras and Meditation Mantras.
Click here to read the article, “The Healing Power of Sound”.