Living Right: An Acoustic Remedy for Improved Sleep


Regular massage therapy has been shown to help with some sleep difficulties. Bianural beat therapy is another method to improve sleep, decrease anxiety and deepen relaxation.

Losing Sleep

According to data collected from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on sleep and additional informantion from the National Sleep Foundation between 2005 and 2009, 35.3 percent of the people surveyed received less than seven hours of sleep per day. The report also noted that 50-70 million adults in the United States suffer from sleep-related disorders. 

This was the first report to compare sleep duration and sleep-related problems in adults living in the United States. For adults older than age 20, 23.2 percent—or 49.2 million people—reported lack of sleep affected their ability to concentrate on tasks; 18.2 percent—38.8 million people—reported it affected their ability to remember things throughout the day; and 13.3 percent—28.2 million people—reported having trouble pursuing leisure activities.

If this is an issue for you, there are several reasons why you might not be getting the best sleep. Some of those could include technological overload, stressing over a busy schedule that leaves too few hours for rest, and anxiety brought on by everyday life. However, there are options and new ways for you to start getting better sleep that may have been unfamiliar to you until today.

A Natural Sleep Aid

Sometimes referred to as sound therapy, binaural beat therapy has been shown to improve sleep, decrease anxiety and deepen relaxation.

In 2001, researchers conducted a study titled “Use of Binaural Beat Tapes for Treatment of Anxiety” with 15 volunteers who suffered from moderate cases of anxiety.

Researchers had the volunteers listen to modulations that produced beats in the delta and theta frequency range five times for 30 minutes over a four week period. The volunteers kept journals to track how often they listened to the beats, how they felt, and which tone from the three tapes they liked the most.

What they found out from those 15 patients who listened to the tapes 10 to 17 times per week was that their levels of anxiety had decreased after the binaural beat sessions. Further, researchers discovered the majority of patients liked the tape with the most noticeable, drawn-out binaural arrangement.

More Research

A 2007 study titled “Binaural Beat Technology in Humans” focused on eight volunteers who had no mental or physical impairments and no significant problems with anxiety or stress. This group listened to a delta wave (also known as 0-4 hertz) for approximately two months.

After examining the participants’ notebooks, which individuals used to track their progress, researchers noted that participants saw improvements in life overall, fewer problems with anxiety, and their insulin and dopamine levels had also gone down.

More on how massage therapy can help with sleep disturbances »

Source: This article was excerpted from mtj® (Massage Therapy Journal®) Fall 2013.Subscribe to read the entire article.

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