Sometimes when I have conversations with people, it really feels like their words are just going in one ear and out the other or perhaps as if they are speaking in a foreign language. It’s kind of automatic and it is not because I don’t enjoy their presence. My brain simply just doesn’t register things at that moment.
Even with all the caffeine that I take and with all the sleep I get (7 to 8 hours worth), there are just days when my brain just does not want to work. There are days when I would easily forget where I park my car after visiting some place. There are even days when I will forget what I was talking about mid-sentence. Don’t even get me started on remembering people’s names of those whom I just met for the first time. It almost feels as if my body is just falling apart.
I start to have thoughts of whether I am getting early Alzheimer’s disease or if there is just something wrong with my mind/brain. I mean, I eat fairly healthy and try to exercise. Some days I would go out for fast food, but I also know of people who are way more concentrated EVEN when eating fast food every day. So what’s going on here? This doesn’t seem to be fair…
The good news is, if you feel this way at times too, you are not alone and KNOW that you are okay! Although the conditions may not be very favorable, we will go over how to handle this. But before I get there, I’ll be going over some basic things.
How Our Brain Works
Our brain produces 5 different types of wavelengths (seen with electroencephalography, or EEG) emitted at different frequencies. They include (from slowest to fastest) in Hertz (Hz), a measurement for cycles per second:
- Delta waves (0.1 Hz to 0.4 Hz)
- regulates deep sleep, pain relief, healing/recovering
- Theta waves (4 Hz to 8 Hz)
- regulates sleep, relaxing, creativity
- Alpha waves (8 Hz to 13 Hz)
- regulates relaxed focus (more passive), stress reduction, positive thinking, passive learning
- Beta waves (13 Hz to 30 Hz)
- regulates focused attention, cognitive ability, problem solving
- Gamma waves (30+ Hz)
- regulates higher levels of cognitive ability, memory, the highest alertness/awareness
Everyone has different levels of these brain waves and they fluctuate throughout the day depending on what activity is being done. For example, when we are sleeping, delta, theta, and alpha waves are produced at higher levels. On the other hand, when we are alert and awake such as at school or work, we may have higher levels of alpha, beta, and gamma waves.
Our brains are sophisticated enough that it just seems to produce the necessary wavelengths automatically for each activity and we should be grateful to not have to deal with all that. However, there are habits we may be doing that CAN interfere with that process by throwing the different wavelengths out of balance and hence lead to symptoms like brain fog. This is where you will feel like you are unable to concentrate, have difficulty making decisions, etc.
Habits and Processes that Cause Brain Fog
There are many habits and processes that we go through that can contribute to brain fog and they include:
- Nutrient/Fluid deficiencies (click here for diet info)
- Poor sleep
- Depression, Anxiety, Stress
- Thyroid issues
- Various medications
- Hormonal changes
- Inactivity/lack of physical activities
Although we may try to take care of these things (and doing it well too), sometimes the brain fog just happens anyway. We wonder if there are any other methods to resolve this. In fact, there is a way (or tool)!
What is a Tool that Can Help Improve Brain Function?
In addition to making efforts to correct the habits/processes listed above, there is actually a tool that can help improve brain function called “binaural beats therapy”. Binaural beats therapy is where you essentially hear recordings of sound frequencies that enter each ear at slightly different frequencies.
What is interesting is that your brain will find the middle ground by trying to combine the sounds and it will only “hear” the difference between the two sound frequencies. As a result, your brain will hear something equivalent to one of the 5 wavelengths (delta, theta, alpha, beta, or gamma).
That can sound a bit confusing, but here is an example. If you hear in one ear at 100 Hz, and in another ear at 110 Hz, the brain will listen to the difference between the two sound frequencies which would be 10 Hz. This is similar to alpha waves (8 Hz to 13 Hz). If you are deficient of alpha waves (perhaps from poor sleep), then by hearing binaural beats playing at a frequency difference of 10 Hz, your brain will synchronize with that sound frequency and even start producing those alpha waves! It is almost like taking sound supplements for the brain!
Where Can I Find Binaural Beats?
Now, there are MANY versions of binaural beats available. There are some that help with getting rid of negative thoughts and stress while there are others for increasing focus and concentration. I have a feeling that by adjusting the difference in the sound frequencies entering each ear, you can imitate one or several of the 5 wavelengths that your brain may be deficient of, hence helping your brain to synchronize with the sound difference and produce the desired wavelength as well as the desired effect!
Of course, you yourself will NOT have to do the adjusting or tuning in the binaural beat therapy frequency difference since that is VERY complex technology. Just choose the desired version (or sound track) with the desired effect.
Since we are on the topic of brain fog, your brain may be deficient of theta waves (probably from being too overactive with the beta and gamma waves due to school or work) so here is a soundtrack to help with that!
If you find this useful, you can search for other specific ones on YouTube. Just type in “Binaural beats” as well as your desired goal (stress, improved concentration, etc.) Or you can purchase an album here as well. (As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases)
Other Benefits to Binaural Beats Therapy
In addition to improving cognitive performance, binaural beats therapy has been known to help with:
- Reduced anxiety and stress levels
- Improved memory
- Improved confidence
- More focused during meditation sessions
- Better sleep
- New ideas (creativity)
- Better mood
Since these sound waves may stimulate various brain activities and responses, it is recommended to not listen to this while driving or any other activity that requires alertness. It can sound counter-intuitive because some tracks boost focus, BUT the last thing you want is to reach something like an “epiphany moment”, be driving at 65 mph, and not realize the vehicle 500 feet ahead of you has come to a complete stop. Definitely NOT worth the risk.
My Experience with Binaural Beats Therapy
I do not necessarily do this therapy all the time since I am quite busy and forget at times too. But on days when I just absolutely cannot function (like how my conversations with people just are not productive, when words just go in one ear and out the other), I would remember to do this therapy. I would play binaural beats soundtracks with my headphones and just sit there listening and not think about anything else.
These soundtracks are not necessarily the most catchy sounding and it has almost like a “buzzing”, ambient tune to it. After a 10 to 20 minute session, I actually do feel quite recharged as if I just had the best sleep ever. Sometimes I feel even better than when I had a full night’s sleep. I feel a lot more calm, can make decisions quicker, and I am just more productive in general.
There are days when I would remember to use this therapy multiple days in a row, and I would not notice much difference. It could just be that I was already receiving the same (max) results as the previous day so I might have reached an optimal brain state and was able to maintain it. After all, my brain was functional so I’m not complaining there. It is when I do not do it for a while that I noticed a significant difference after hearing these sounds again. So I highly recommend this binaural beats therapy when encountering brain fog.
Life can be quite demanding at times and it can really take a toll on each of us. Sometimes sleep alone is not sufficient to help our brains fully recover let alone a proper diet with exercise. Therefore, what is being recommended here is the utilization of binaural beats within our daily schedules. They practically act like “supplements” for our brain.
In as little as 10 minutes, these binaural beats can help you feel refreshed. This will also improve your ability to concentrate as you go about your day. Hopefully, you will feel more at peace and be stress free!
Did you enjoy this life hack on how to get rid of brain fog and improve brain function? Please leave a comment below!