Sound can be a healing experience for many reasons, from soothing music to therapeutic vibrations. There are many benefits of sound therapy, including reduced stress, pain relief, and improved memory. Learn more about the healing properties of sound and how you can incorporate sound therapy into your health and wellness routine.
What is Sound Therapy?
Sound healing therapy uses aspects of music to improve physical and emotional health and well-being. How it works depends on the method being used. Most music therapy sessions are experienced one-on-one with a specially trained practitioner. Sound therapy may involve listening to music, singing along to music, moving to the beat of the music, meditating to sound or guided meditation, playing an instrument, or feeling the vibrations of the sound.
A session may involve sitting or lying down while listening to music or sounds from a speaker or instruments, or having vibrations applied using a special tool, such as a tuning fork. Depending on the method, you may be encouraged to participate by singing, moving, or even using a musical instrument, or you may need to remain still and quiet to let the sounds take effect. Along with voice, different instruments used in music therapy include singing bowls, tuning forks, pan flutes, harps, drums, and any other instrument that has high vibrations.
Sound Therapy Benefits
Throughout history, music has been used to boost morale in military troops, help people work faster and more productively, and even ward off evil spirits by chanting. More recently, research has linked music to a number of health benefits, from boosting immune function and lowering stress levels to improving the health of premature babies. Depending on which sound therapy technique you choose, sound therapy benefits may include:
|Bone pain relief||Lowered cholesterol|
|Decreased anxiety||Muscle pain relief|
|Decreased depression||PTSD relief|
|Decreased mood swings||Reduced blood pressure|
|Improved emotional balance||Reduced PMS symptoms|
|Improved memory||Reduced risk of heart disease|
|Improved physiological health||Reduced risk of stroke|
|Improved psychological health||Released tension|
|Improved sleep||Stress reduction|
Types of Sound Therapy
Also known as binaural beats or functional music, this method stimulates the brain into a specific state using pulsing sound to encourage your brain waves to align to the frequency of the beat. It’s supposed to help induce enhanced focus, entranced state, relaxation, and sleep. Though more research is needed, there’s some evidence that audible brainwave entrainment reduces anxiety, pain, and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome, as well as improves behavioral problems in children. This is a very popular biohacking technique for inducing a meditative, relaxed state.
Guided meditation is a form of sound healing in which you meditate to voiced instruction, either in a session or class, or using a video or app. Meditation can involve sounds such as chanting or repeating mantras or prayers, listening to a peaceful description of a setting or scenario, breathwork guidance. Research has found that guided meditation offers a number of health benefits including reduced stress, improved memory, pain reduction, and lowered cholesterol. There are plenty of apps, videos, and playlists available for any length of meditation – whether it’s only 5 minutes or 2 hours.
Neurologic Music Therapy
Music therapy can reduce stress and promote relaxation. It’s been shown to be more effective than prescription drugs in reducing anxiety levels before surgery. A study published in 2017 found that a 30-minute music therapy session combined with traditional care after spinal surgery reduced pain. Music therapy is administered by a credentialed provider who assesses the individual’s needs. Treatment involves creating, listening, singing, or moving to music. It’s used for physical rehab, pain management, and brain injuries.
Tuning Fork Therapy
Tuning fork therapy uses calibrated metal tuning forks to apply specific vibrations to different parts of the body. This can help release tension and energy, and promote emotional balance. It supposedly works similarly to acupuncture, using sound frequencies for point stimulation instead of needles. There is research suggesting that tuning fork therapy may help relieve muscle and bone pain, and some say other benefits include better digestion, reduced inflammation, balanced nervous system, and improved sleep.
Vibrational Resonance Therapy
Vibrational resonance therapy (VRT), also known as acoustic resonance therapy (ART), promotes relaxation and healing through the use of sound and vibration. Listening and feeling the music simultaneously allows the body to naturally relax into the harmonic flow, thus allowing the body to reset and return to its natural state of being. With musical harmonic resonance, the body will relax stressed muscles and joints and activate neural-pathways in the brain to help create mental focus and stable heart rate. When the body and mind are able to relax into a state of peaceful listening, it is able to stimulate endorphins that promote balance in the body’, which in turn boosts the immune system.
Using Sound Therapy in a Sauna
Including sound therapy in your home sauna sessions enhances the rejuvenating properties of infrared therapy. Think of it as a light touch massage for your body and mind during your sauna session.
You can easily combine the benefits of sound therapy with the benefits of an infrared sauna. In Clearlight saunas, vibration resonance therapy modules can be attached to the bottom of the sauna bench and use an amplified audio signal to resonate sound waves to the surface of the sauna. Additionally, you can incorporate other forms of sound therapy in your sauna by playing audio. Make a playlist of calming music to play during your session, or tap into the many benefits of guided meditation through the speakers of your sauna.
No matter which sound therapy techniques you choose to try, you will be amazed by just how much sound can improve your health and wellbeing. Whether you simply dance to your favorite song or you tune in to the vibrations of the sound around you, sound has proven throughout history to be a powerful health tool.