The study of neuroscience is in the prehistoric age compared to the study of orthopedics or skin disease. There is far more that we don’t know compared to what we do know. The research on modular v’s non-modular brains which began in 2000 is only now being accepted as the long-held view of left brain rationality and right-brain creativity is dumped. The existence of neurons and brainwaves however are beyond doubt.
The brain is made up of billions of cells called neurons which communicate with each other using electrical signals that can be read using sensors on parts of the head. The combined activity from all parts of the brain or groups of neurons is called a brain wave.
The electrical signal travels along the axon part of the neuron using ‘action potentials’ (where the outside and the inside of the axon change polarity). This amplifies the signal as it travels so the same voltage goes out of the neuron as came in..
The discovery of brain waves established that the brain will change depending on what a person is doing. The brain waves of a sleeping person are very different than the brain waves of someone wide awake. Over the years, we’ve become closer to figuring out what brain waves represent and what they mean about a person’s health and state of mind. See a video HERE.
Our headsets can read not only where in the brain your neurons are firing, but how excited they are. One neuron never fires on its own, yet can excite a group of neurons. The sensors read the groups of neurons which can be repeatedly activated by thinking the same thought or having the same stimulus. In this way, an individual can ‘teach’ our software to recognise their neuronal activity and therefore ‘instruct’ the software to act in certain ways. This can then work prosthetic devices, cars, drones and many pieces of technology.
GAMMA WAVES: more than 30Hz (or 30 cycles per second)
Blue, purple, purple, pink & red meshing together as white.
The fastest wave & comes when a person is concentrating deeply or in ‘flight or fight’ mode.. Gamma corresponds to a state of peak performance & high excitement (REF).
Elite athletes, top-musicians & high achievers all produce far more gamma waves than average. It is the wave of high information processing. Gamma is where many waves work together to form a white colour.
BETA WAVES (12-30Hz) – Wide awake
BETA waves are a blue to purple in colour.
Fast waves produced usually when someone is wide awake & concentrating. Some people have too much beta activity, which can cause anxiety & bipolar disorder (REF). Beta often comes from the frontal lobes. When using the MINDZ headset you will probably have lots of purple-blue BETA.
Some types of ADHD/ADD are associated with an excess of Beta waves while other types are associated with not enough. One theory is that ADHD and stress/anxiety produced ADD is due to too much Beta and not enough Theta.
ALPHA WAVES (7.5-12Hz) – Awake but relaxed
ALPHA wave activity is light blue/teal green in colour.
ALPHA brain waves are present when you are relaxed yet still alert to what is happening around you. You may be looking at a piece of art or just sitting quietly. They usually occur in the Occipital Lobe (the back part of the brain) & are very important in visual processing (REF).
When you get up in the morning & just before sleep you are naturally in this state. Repetitive exercise can also produce them. It is a good state for learning as your memory is active. You probably won’t show much ALPHA when using the MINDZ headset due to the sound around you. Sound interrupts Alpha waves..
THETA WAVES (4-7Hz) – Deep focus or meditation
THETA wave activity is brown-orange in colour.
These occur in daydreaming but also in meditation & focused attention. Focused attention is NOT like concentration (Beta). It can be an inward focus or focus on an ‘auto-pilot’ task like driving or painting a wall. Like Alpha, repetitive sound or movement can create Theta.
Theta originate in the hippocampus (deep inside the brain towards the back above the neck). They are concerned with memory & especially the formation of new memories & navigation. There is a reliable relationship between the size of a person’s hippocampus & memory performance.
Because the hippocampus has many densely packed layers of neurons, it generates very strong EEG signals. While most people using the MINDZ headset will not be relaxed & meditative, they will be paying close attention to one thing (the screen) & will therefore show some THETA.
It’s our view that some types of ADHD/ADD result from not enough Theta and Alpha (REF).
DELTA WAVES (0-4hz) – Deep sleep
DELTA wave activity is pink-red in colour.
Delta is experienced in deep, dreamless sleep & in transcendental meditation where awareness is fully detached. Among many things, deep sleep is important in healing & regeneration – both physical & emotional. Hence, not having enough deep sleep is detrimental to your health in more ways than one. Hardly anyone using the MINDZ headset will show DELTA waves.
A Mindz Brainplay session will explain not only the brainwaves that are produced by your neurons, but the way your neurons communicate with one another.
For a copy of the ‘Brain Colour Interpretations’ used in our AirBnB or Brain Journey experiences, click HERE.