Exploring Different Types of Brain Waves to Find the Real You

Brain is considered as the supreme seat of power in human mechanism. You may have come across lots of texts explaining the numerous functions of brains, ye very few texts actually deals with the types of brain waves that are generated by individual blocks of cells called neurons. Our brain similar to an electrochemical organ emits different frequencies while functioning called brain waves. As per the neurological research our brain waves pattern is directly linked with our behaviors, performance and capabilities. We can actually measure these brain waves using an electroencephalogram or EEG.

These brain waves are measured in hertz or cycle per second.

The human brain waves can be differentiated into four namely:

a) Beta- Measured between 13 to 38 Hz, these waves are emitted during sleep, deep relaxation or even during the process of visualization. It is commonly associated with arousal, cognition, alertness and concentration. Too much stimulation of beta activity can induce panic, increased blood pressure and creates a state of anxiety in the victim. Stimulants like alcohol, nicotine in cigarettes, caffeine in coffee, diet pills etc can induce this sate of brain.

b) Alpha- Measured between 8-13 Hz, alpha brain waves is associated with relaxed and calm brainwave pattern. Alpha patterns can be divided into ‘twilight state’ and ‘super learning’ state. The former occurs in state of deep relaxation (often between sleep and waking) whereas the latter occurs when the brain pattern is more focused yet in a relaxed manner. This is a trance state in which the individual is open to suggestion as the conscious logical mind is inactive. Excess of alpha activity can lead to daydreaming and excessive escapism from the reality.

c) Theta- Measured between 4-7 Hz, theta brain waves are commonly observed with the sate of dreaming sleep. However theta waves are also associated with many beneficial states such as increased creativity and increased memory power. This is one of those ‘aha’ experience where the victim is subjected to sudden insight or unique innovation. Theta waves can be located in those areas where we bury our memories, sensations and emotions. Theta waves produce a pattern when we try to block painful memories or unpleasant experiences. Insomnia is often associated with hyper activity of theta waves.

d) Delta- Measured below 4 Hz , delta brainwaves produce the slowest brain pattern. It occurs when the individual is undergoing dreamless sleep. This is total unconscious or coma stage. The mind is at complete rest and passes through dormant phase.

A careful manipulation of these brain waves can help in the optimal use of brainpower. For example it is proved that during alpha phase, visualizing our innate dreams and passions as I they are actually real will make them manifest into reality when confronted with affirmations. This theory is based on the concept that the subconscious mind during this phase accepts whatever it is told. The subconscious mind tends to reject the word ‘will’ as it is in the undefined future tense. Various brainwave entrainment packages use this idea to make an individual proficient in descending to the alpha level and thereby master self-hypnosis to strengthen their mind.

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Area 47 in the Ă–tztal Valley, Tyrol
human brain
Image by Harald Felgner
Brodmann area 47, or BA47, is part of the frontal cortex in the human brain. Curving from the lateral surface of the frontal lobe into the ventral (orbital) frontal cortex. It is below areas BA10 and BA45, and beside BA11.

As part of the BBC #In the Mind series Fergus Walsh visits the Bristol Brain Bank, one of a network of ten brain banks managed by the Medical Research Council. Here he shares some facts and figures about what makes the human brain one of the most complex structures in the world. The report contains detailed shots of the human brain from the start.

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