In the past it has been thought that a person's intelligence level remained the same throughout their lifetime and that their IQ would therefore remain static also. Nowadays this traditional thinking is being questioned. It is thought that mental exercises helps with mental "fitness" and experimental neurotropic or "smart drugs" are also thought to potentially increase intelligence by increasing blood flow to stimulate parts of the brain and so on. Another technique used in an attempt to improve brain function is the use of sound (and sometimes light as well) to influence certain types of brain wave patterns. This is called brainwave entrainment. Listening to certain binaural beats are supposed to stimulate the beta brain wave pattern that is optimal for learning and concentration, thereby improving IQ.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Binaural beat digital MP3 program or CD
- MP3 or CD player
Download (or buy a CD with) a binaural beat program that encourages beta brain waves. These audio tracks play sounds at different tempos into each ear creating a low frequency beat that allegedly encourages your brainwaves to fall into the beta brainwave pattern (in this case) that you want. Many of these programs you will have to pay for, but you will be able to at least download trial versions online.
Lie in a comfortable place and listen to your downloaded MP3 or CD through headphones. This is important as binaural beats use a different sound in each ear. Also you need to completely concentrate your brain on the sounds and eliminate outside noise.
While your brain is in its optimal state for learning after listening to your binaural beat program, perform the mental tasks that you would like to improve.
Tips and warnings
- Monaural beats and isochronic tones are now being researched as potentially better ways of brain entrainment.
- You can buy light and sound machines that come with goggles and earphones. These have different settings for the full range of delta, theta, beta and alpha brain wave entrainment, using sound and pulsating lights to influence the pattern. If you like using this kind of technology, one of these might be a good investment for you.
- Don't listen to any binaural beat program while operating machinery.
- Although the websites selling these brain entrainment programs claim that the subject is well researched, there isn't yet conclusive evidence that this kind of technology works. It is self-evident that different sounds can affect our mood and state of mind. Music with a fast beat, for instance, energises, while music that is slower makes us feel more relaxed. However, when using these programs, do not expect them to work miracles, as some websites claim they will.
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