Did you know?
The human brain consists of billions of neurons that communicate with each other through electrical signals; they produce enough electricity to power a small light bulb. These electrical signals are in the form of rhythmic patterns called brain waves (or neural oscillations). Brain waves play a major role in information processing, perception, motor coordination, memory, sleep and consciousness. Quite interesting, isn’t it?
What do Brain Waves do?
Brain waves occur in various frequencies and each frequency affects how we feel. For example, when a person feels lazy, the slower oscillations are dominant, higher oscillations tend to be dominant when a person is hyper active. Brain waves are measured in units called 'hertz'. They can also monitored from outside the body through sensors known as EEG (electroencephalography).
5 Types of Brain Waves
Brain waves are classified as:
Delta waves are the slowest of the brain waves. They can be detected during a deep, dreamless sleep and also during meditation. This calm state helps in healing and regeneration. Hence, it is always advised that one shouldn’t miss out on quality sleep.
Similar to delta waves, theta waves are also detected during sleep and meditation. They are also found when a person is day dreaming or is in a relaxed state of mind. Theta waves have a positive association with memory, creativity, learning and intuition.
Alpha waves indicate a resting state while simultaneously being conscious. They occur when the person is comfortable and has a peaceful state of mind. These waves help the individual complete the tasks at hand with ease.
Beta waves are an indication of normal consciousness and alertness. They can usually be detected when a person is awake and is actively involved in a task. For instance, engaging in conversations and decisions, concentrating on something, solving issues, or learning something new.
Gamma waves are the fastest of the brain waves. They are mostly detected when a person is in a heightened state of consciousness. This state involves engaging different parts of the brain. They are vital for processing information, memory, learning, and so on.
Understanding Brain Waves
All brain waves are interlinked and are highly essential for the overall well-being of an individual. Too much of brain waves can result in problems like anxiety and aggression while too little of the same can result in depression and insomnia. Abnormalities in brain waves can lead to various disorders such as learning disorders, attention deficit disorders and hallucinations, among others.
While medication can alter brain waves, it is also possible to manipulate brain waves to one’s advantage in non-invasive ways. One of the most common ways is to practice meditation which increases the alpha waves and reduces beta waves. While there are other waves, it is necessary to consult a doctor who can suggest the method that best suits you.