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Brain Waves and You, Lights and Flashing


Alpha Brain Wave Video

Mind Machines

Brain Waves


All of us have them. No they are not waves like you see in the ocean, but they are waves in that your brain produces activity in such a way that they are read like waves on a graph. When the brain is active our minds are constantly adapting to our environment. Stress, anxiety, activity, and work can all effect our brain wave activity. The brain works in stages where there are certain frequencies of activity that are associated with different mental states. These mental states can be observed by neuro-physicists and health scientists by using EEG technology. Electrodes hooked up to the brain can read the subtle chemical electrical impulses produced by these states of mind. Doctors use this information to find abnormalities in people's brain activity which may show them areas of brain damage such as in the case of epileptics and those who suffer from flashing light sensitivity.

But now we not only can read brain wave states but we can influence these states in the form of flashing light and beating sound to produce calming effects or even in some cases incapacitate a felon. This type of technology has been around for thousands of years. Tribal people used beating drums, and fire to produce altered states of consciousness along with the use of hallucinogenic drugs. They believed that these states of altered consciousness would allow them to reach a spiritual mental level beyond the world we experience in waking life. Today we know that flashing light and alternating beats effect the way our brains work. Our brains are halved in such a way as to create two hemispheres. One hemisphere is the visual or creative brain (the right brain) and the other side (the left side) is the cognitive mathmatical and factual part of the brain. When light and sound are produced in such a way as alternating flashes and beats the brain wave activity seems to synchronize with the beats and flashing light. This creates an altered state of consciousness.This process is known as hemi-synch or hemispheric synchronization.The type of flashing and beats effect the brain wave states in that the brain waves are measured in hertz. Here we will look at the brain wave patterns and their associated meanings and mental states.

Brain Wave States:

delta waves.

Delta waves are between 1 and 4 Hz. This state is associated with slow wave sleep patterns in adults. It can point to subcortical lesions in the metabolic regions of the brain.

theta waves.

Theta is the frequency range from 4 Hz to 7 Hz. Observed in people who are having creative expression, artistic creativity, sexual arousal, and child like day dreaming.

alpha waves.

Alpha is the frequency range from 8 Hz to 12 Hz. Alpha waves have been recorded in deeply relaxed meditative states.

beta waves.

Beta is the frequency range from 12 Hz to about 30 Hz. It is the dominant rhythm in patients who are alert or anxious or who have their eyes open and are participating and reacting to their environment. (Awake State)

gamma waves.

Gamma is the frequency range approximately 30–100 Hz. Gamma rhythms are associated with mental concentration and work.

So what does this information do for you? Well you can buy or you can watch and download videos, mp3's, and mind machines that produce these desired effects. I have included some videos on this hub that you can use to experience these effects.


Sean Jankowski (author) from Southern Oregon on September 20, 2012:

You may have been suffering from photophobia. Sometimes flashing lights can cause headaches and even seizures in certain people; this could mean they are photophobic.

I'd see your doctor and ask if you can have a test done for seizures using flashing lights. Always consult your doctor when your health is concerned.

jj on September 20, 2012:

I was stuck in stop-n-go traffic last night on a 4 lane highway, when I was suddenly unable to focus. All I could see were the constant blinking red brake lights of the many cars around me, and due to the darkness was all I was able to focus on. The numerous blinkers and constant braking quickly disoriented me and gave me a throbbing headache. I was unable to judge distances between all the red lights and between my vehicle and the vehicles around me. The vehicles left tail-light infront of me, and the right tail-light of the vehicles ahead and in the left lane of me, seemed to look like another vehicle. Even when I tried to look away from all of the flashing red lights I was still able to see them out of the corner of my eye and still had to look up to move when traffic ahead of me slowly moved. As soon as the traffic cleared and I was able to drive without being surrounded by the flashing of red lights, my headache went away and I was no longer disoriented. This is the first time something like this has ever happened to me and was curious if its ever happened to anyone else; or anyone know what happened to me?

ThussaysNanaMarie from In my oyster on April 25, 2012:

Really informative! I am fascinated. I've always wondered, for two weeks after a day/night trip to Las Vegas, I was still getting dreams of flashing lights. I woke up several times so confused about where I was. Could my brain have been in over drive by the lights.

If I was looking in a book it might have appeared too technical a subject to read about. It's amazing what you learn through hubs.

Ryan Monett from Dallas, Texas on February 04, 2012:

Great article.

BrainDUDE on March 03, 2011:

We still don't completely understand how the brain works, it is an elegantly complex organ. We can measure eletrical activity in the brain, which we're pretty sure translates to 'how much' your brain is being used.

suzata on October 13, 2010:

great information..

n would u mind answering some of my few questions...

how do brain actually work? some people think more... some think less at the same time..

how to measure 'em? even psycho's brain too works.. they too think.... how or what is used to measure frequency of individual's do brain work..

Sandy Mertens from Wisconsin, USA on July 31, 2010:

Great information on brain wave states.

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