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Got insomnia? You may want to listen to your brain with an ‘acoustic mirror’

Jan. 28, 2023.
2 min. read Interactions

About the Writer

Amara Angelica

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Senior Editor Amara Angelica, an electrical engineer and inventor, was previously Editor of Kurzweil AI, working with Ray Kurzweil on The Singularity Is Near and other works.

Listening to sounds from your brain

A good night’s sleep is crucial to health and wellbeing. Numerous research studies have shown that insomnia can increase the risk of cardiovascular events, obesity, diabetes and other illnesses. 

Now a new study by researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine has shown significant improvements in both sleep quality and improved autonomic nervous system function, using closed-loop, acoustic-stimulation neurotechnology.

How to listen to your brain

Invented by Scottsdale, Arizona-based Cereset, the idea is to monitor your brainwaves using EEG scalp sensors, then use software algorithms to translate specific brain frequencies into audible tones of varying pitch*. These tones, synchronized with the brain waves, are echoed back in real time via earbuds. In effect, this lets your brain listen to itself.

This “Cereset Research with Standard Operating Procedures” (CR-SOP) method (an improvement to HIRREM) “allows the brain to reset from stress patterns that contribute to insomnia, says Charles H. Tegeler, M.D., chair of neurology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. “During the intervention, the brain continuously updates with respect to its own activity patterns, resulting in auto-calibration or self-optimization,” he explained.

Clinically significant improvements

To assess this method, Tegeler led a new study, published in Global Advances in Integrative Medicine and Health, an open-access journal.

In a randomized and controlled study of 22 adults, researchers compared changes on the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), a self-report instrument to assess insomnia symptoms. Subjects in the CR-SOP group reported reduced insomnia symptoms. They also showed statistically and clinically significant improvements in autonomic function across multiple measures such as heart rate variability (HRV) and baroreflex sensitivity (BRS), compared to those who received random tones.

The core brain-mirroring technology is now available in 58 local Cereset client centers in the US, according to the company. Hopefully, this ingenious tech can help stressed-out folks, such as Covid healthcare workers and caregivers.

* Hmmm, could this allow for creating music with your mind? (Paging Jam Galaxy!)

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One thought on “Got insomnia? You may want to listen to your brain with an ‘acoustic mirror’

  1. Closely related, I have used a device named Urgonight that detects SMR brain waves and provides corresponding audio feedback to find personalized activities to increase the amount of these brain waves and therefore improve sleep.
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