by Matt Weik
It doesn’t matter where you live or what you’re doing, sound is always around us. We can’t perceive it directly, but we experience it on different levels and with various degrees of awareness. Sound can be soothing (like the sound of rain, the ocean, or wind chimes) — which is also considered sound healing. And sound can also be jarring (like a traffic jam with honking cars or the neighbor’s kid crying when he fell off his bike) — which can add additional stress to our lives.
But can sound heal you? People get a bit confused when they first hear the term “sound healing.” While they may understand what sound is, what healing means is often a little more mysterious.
What is Sound Healing?
Sound healing is the use of sounds and music with the intent to heal the mind, body, and spirit. Sound healing has been used for decades in many cultures as a means of meditation and relaxation. Sound therapy may involve:
• Listening to music
• Moving to the beat of music
• Singing along to music
According to some recent research, music has quite a few health benefits, from improving the health of premature babies to boosting immune function and decreasing stress levels.
Throughout history, music has been shown to boost military troops’ morale and increase people’s work efficiency. Let’s look at some of the benefits of sound healing.
The Benefits of Sound Healing
Sound healing is the practice of listening to sounds and frequencies for relaxation and healing. Harmonic sound waves increase the vibrations of your body’s energy and can balance the frequency of your chakras. It is also called vocal toning, chanting, singing bowls, or vibrational medicine.
Here are some of the benefits of sound healing:
Deep relaxation is considered one of the most important and universal benefits of sound healing and sound therapy. With all the insanely busy schedules we are burdened with and so much going on in the world, we can all listen to some music and get some chill vibes flowing.
Relaxation can help reduce stress, lower cortisol levels, and improve your overall physical and mental health (which leads us nicely into our next two benefits).
2. Boost Health
Sound therapy uses music and sound to stimulate relaxation and general well-being. This method of sound healing is based on the idea that certain sounds can improve your health, boost energy, increase focus, help you lose weight, and reduce stress. Some believe that these sounds can even heal ailments such as cancer, arthritis, and asthma.
Tibetan bowls are one example of a sound therapy device that produces healing vibrations. These bowls are created from specific metals such as copper or bronze and are made to vibrate when hit with a wooden mallet. Other therapeutic instruments include the gong, tambourine, singing bowl, drum, and flute.
Some benefits include improved sleep, lowered cholesterol, lowered risk of heart disease, reduced blood pressure, and decreased chronic pain.
3. Improve Mental Health
“Sound healing balances and clears the mind, and leads to a renewed sense of purpose, well-being, calm and happiness.” – Susy Markoe Schieffelin, sound healer.
Sound therapy can also heal mental and emotional distress. Today, there are lots of people who use sound as part of their daily wellness routine. Many believe that listening to music helps them relax, release endorphins, and ease depression and anxiety.
4. Treat Tinnitus
Tinnitus is a constant ringing or buzzing in your ears that may come from damage to the hearing nerves in your ears. The condition causes about 50 million people worldwide to experience ringing, buzzing, or other sounds in their ears. Most people who suffer from tinnitus find it annoying, but some may actually find it debilitating, and it can affect their quality of life.
For people suffering from chronic conditions such as tinnitus, sound healing can positively affect their overall health and quality of life.
Types of Sound Healing Methods
Here are just some of the many sound healing methods practiced around the world today.
Chanting has been used as a form of spiritual practice for thousands of years. It’s also an effective form of stress relief and is sometimes used in conjunction with meditation. Studies have shown that chanting can significantly reduce high blood pressure, boost the immune system, and increase serotonin levels.
Humming can help lift the spirits and clear your head. Interestingly enough, it also helps keep the sinuses healthy and clean.
3. Tibetan Bowls
Tibetan singing bowls are perhaps one of the most popular forms of sound healing today. Known for their rich and resonant tones, Tibetan singing bowls date back to at least 600 AD. The resonance created by striking these bowls creates a vibration that causes subtle shifts in brain waves and balances out the left and right hemispheres of the brain. These shifts can help promote deep meditation, clear the mind, and support self-awareness.
4. Classical Music
Classical music improves the rate of development of the synaptic connections in one’s mind. It triggers creativity and addresses physical illnesses such as anxiety, blood pressure, and muscle tension.
Should You Use Sound Healing in Your Daily Life?
Sound healing can help you find a complete and full state of relaxation. It is an experience that can be created in your home, office, and even while traveling the globe. If you want to experience all that sound has to offer, you can implement some of these methods on your own or visit a professional practitioner to enjoy a sound therapy session.