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Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Human Anatomy, Physiology, and Medicine. Anything human!

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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby CrazyCal » Sat Oct 13, 2012 12:48 pm

Hi everyone! I registered just because of this thread. I had an experience tonight while my night shift co-worker did his evening workout/yoga. The light, delicate squeak of his shoes on the floor set it off. Normally it's not shoes squeaking. Normally it's a soothing (usually female) voice, sometimes people gently flipping through a book. It hasn't happened for quite a while, so tonights experience renewed my intrest in this phenomenon. One thing that has always, since I was a kid, set off this trance is Bob Ross. Always has. Always will. This man is the embodiment of tranquility. His voice is so soothing and the strokes of his brush and especially the scraping of his knife on the canvas.

I am listening, as I type, to this Bob Ross video on youtube. So soothing. Keeps the trance going. Just started round 4. lol


You know, I don't think I've ever (in nearly 9 years) told my wife about this phenomenon happening to me. I think I'll mention it. Nice to know there are other people that experience and, most of all, embrace and enjoy this feeling the same way I do.

Round 5 of that Bob Ross video. lol

SteveCenders has some great Bob Ross videos:
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby mschrissy84 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 6:14 pm

Andym777, forgive me, but I do not believe that it is all related to the first sounds we hear as babies. Perhaps, as I have noticed these sensations since I was little. If I had a teacher with a voice that made my head tingle, I could not concentrate. Even through college this was an issue, as studying in the library exposed me to keyboard typing, pages rustling, pencils writing and most hypnotic, people whispering. I think it has something to do with sensitivity to stimuli.

Can any of you guys tell me if you are also sensitive to negative stimuli, as I noticed one commenter is? I.e., noises that are too much for me to handle cause me to feel overwhelmed.

HOWEVER, an important note to everyone....I was on a hormone treatment and started having TEMPORAL LOBE SEIZURES. They started with an aura like a migraine does, but then the tingling in my temporal lobes and other symptoms occured such as a euphoric feeling afterwards like I get when I'm 'hypnotized" by a particulars sound, and I had it checked out. Supposedly I am prone to temporal lobe epilepsy and I think it is linked to the tingling sensations I get from certain sounds and the sleepiness feeling that causes. I also get chills through my body that start in my head and spread through my neck and find myself twitching a lot, particularly when I'm falling asleep. Anyone else?

Is anyone else sensitive to other stimuli and things like drugs and touch?
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Postby mschrissy84 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 6:35 pm

Also I forgot to note that my seizures were partial seizures and felt good and happened mainly when I was tired and/or relaxed. I noticed that this weird tingling sensation that starts with a particular sound and spreads through my body and "hypnotizes" me is easier to hone in on when I'm tired and/or relaxed. In fact, I notice that when I have to much coffee I can not channel it to intensify the feeling. Also I wanted to concur with others that music definitely does not do it for me either. In fact, I find it harder to get the same feeling from videos and other medias than from real life stimuli. Occasionally there is a voice on the phone or a video that can kind of make me tingly. Haha.
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby Marianne2402 » Tue Nov 06, 2012 10:26 pm

Hi everyone,

I posted about two years ago, trying to find out more about this phenomenon. In the last two years I found out a lot more about ASMR, as it's usually called. And to my delight there are many, many youtube channels dedicated to this.

I would recommend you check out Adreambeam's channel, https://www.youtube.com/user/adreambeam.
She has about 80 video with different triggers. Something for everyone! scratching sounds, eating an apple, whispering etc.

In the video in the link below, she explains the sensation of ASMR and the different triggers that people can have:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1c2f_r ... ature=plcp

Also: a few weeks ago AMSR was a topic in a very popular daily live talkshow in the Netherlands. I posted the link with translations below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eKMJMK6 ... ature=plcp

Enjoy the lovely braintingles!
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby Steviep1969 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:07 pm

Wow I've finally found a page on the internet referring to these strange sensations i get from sound.

Everyone seems to have the same response as me: I felt i was the only one who got these shivers in my head.
I guess i never mentioned it to anyone before because no one mentioned it to me, and there is not alot of stuff on the web about it.

I work in the music business and whilst listening to certain music, or a chord can send shivers down my spine, they do not generally give me this little waves of pleasure that run across my neck and head in the same way.

I work in an office and at the moment the sounds that set me off on a little wave are my colleagues hammering away at their keyboards. I don't believe the same thing would happen if I had a tape of those same noises though.

Another one that sets me off is the sound of my mum ironing, or someone else wrapping presents, including the cutting of the wrapping paper with scissors. Sometimes the person sat next to me will bang their metal bangle on the desk when typing - that sets me off too! It can really stop my work rate as i sit there in a mild trance like state waiting for the next little thrill. I have trouble concentrating at work as my mind drifts off somewhere else when in a meeting - i now realise that this pleasurable effect can make my mind wander and think about other things.

Anyway - I wouldnt want these sensations to go away as they are harmless and feel great.
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby laurenfob2301 » Tue Dec 11, 2012 9:09 pm

i feel the same way with certain sounds. finally. someone who understands...such an odd sensation.
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Postby Snoozin » Thu Dec 13, 2012 2:57 am

Hello! I am so excited to read these accounts of this phenomenon! Before last night, I also thought I was the only one!

The first time I REMEMBER feeling the tingling and peaceful euphoria was when I was 14 and my best friend was gently sweeping my brother's bedroom, as I lay relaxing on my bro's bed. Another time, my boyfriend's mom stepped into the room I was in and nicely, quietly, served me a dish of dinner she'd made.

Because the majority of situations that have triggered this have involved watching someone clean or having someone do something FOR me, in a gentle manner of course, a friend of mine long-ago dubbed it "The Princess Syndrome." Then he asked if I make my husband put on a French maid outfit to clean the house. Hahaha! I had to explain how it really is NOT sexual what-so-ever. So here are my actual triggers:
1. Watching someone clean house in a quiet, methodical manner My mother had a housekeeper for awhile, in my adulthood, and I loved watching her clean. I wondered what she thought of this grown lazy daughter, ass on the couch doing nothing while her mother paid a housekeeper to do what she could have been helping with. Oh well.
2. Having someone give me something or do something for me that involved some thought and time. Haircuts and shampoos are good, but only if the person is VERY gentle.
3. Certain piano pieces that involve the higher notes, in a perfectly-executed soft rhythmic pattern - the BEST song is the theme from Amelie, when my husband plays it - oh, trance time.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qr_L38bwZhU or on harp: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_d-4siO6bdE BUT - it works a lot better live.
4. Certain voices talking - this has only happened once, actually, but the voice was smooth with smooth diction & tempo.

So an aide at my office does my filing 2x/wk, and when he does, I just stare at my computer and bask in the high of this sensation. I can't really even see him, as he is mostly behind me, but a) He's only 3 feet from me, b) he's doing a soft task I can hear and c) he's doing it for ME. SO nice. This is the only situation in which I can "plan" it, otherwise it always needs to be spontaneous. But even when in my office, it'll last only 10 seconds or so, then something distracts me, but it can come back if all gets quiet again.

I agree that there must be some pleasant association that was created at some point, but there must be another element for us, because EVERYBODY has pleasant associations, but only we get the distinct tingling. Mine, btw, doesn't travel - it stays in my head.

I asked my brain physiology professor back in the 80's what this was, and he had no idea. We agreed there must be a release of endorphins, and that I was pretty lucky I could get that sensation without the use of drugs.

I'll check out some videos but I haven't had this triggered by anything I've ever come across on TV or youtube. It seems to need to be LIVE.

Thank you, fellow Martians!
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Postby Soundstrue » Fri Dec 14, 2012 4:22 pm

What a relief! You guys know EXACTLY what I'm talking about!! Last night I sat on the couch and my husband pulled out the laptop and started emailing. Those key strokes triggered my euphoria instantly. I've always wondered what the heck this is, but never told anyone. So right then and there I Googled "love the sounds of paper rustling' and found this board. My earliest memory of experiencing this sensation was when I was 6. My teacher was reading a picture book to our class and each exquisite turn of the page sent me into bliss. I'll never forget it. However, I associated it as being some kind of weird perversion (not sure why because it's definitely not sexual, just delightfully tingly and soothing), so I never shared this with anyone until last night after reading these boards! My husband seemed absolutely delighted and curious by my descriptions. Being a musician, he said he also gets chills from great music. Not the same, I said. Here's my list of triggers:

- Libraries. If someone is re-shelving or flipping through pages, I have to stop what I'm doing, just stand there and melt.

- Newspapers. Like others, I also discovered this caused the same feeling so I would deliberately sit near my Grandpa as he flipped through the pages when I was kid. Same affect nowadays in coffee shops, for example.

- Key strokes. Sheer delight for me.

- I discovered a new one within the past year. In my yoga class, during savasana, the teacher will walk back and forth across the floor to turn off lights, turn up heat, put props away, etc... The sound of her feet gently shuffling across the floor is absolutely pleasurable in the same way as paper rustling.

- Pencil cases, make up cases, etc...(Yup, me too!) I went to Art School and never noticed if sketching or painting had an affect. That might be because I was so focused on my own drawing.

And yes, it is triggered by OTHER people at times when I'm not looking for it to happen. It catches me off guard. I can't will it to happen. It just happens when I don't expect it. And like so many of you, I get super relaxed and it's a bummer when it ends. Also, if I focus on it, it goes away. I tried an experiment last night. While my husband was emailing, I'd open my eyes and look at his hands typing. The feelings would disappear almost instantly. Then I'd close my eyes again, and off I'd go:)

On the flipside to this, I am absolutely sensitive to noises I perceive as annoying.
- Loud gum chewing/cracking
- Forks/knives scraping on plates (this is maddening to me!)
- Loud chewing

And I'm super sensitive to voices in restaurants. If I can hear someone else's conversations or knives on their plates or whatnot, I'm immediately agitated and distracted to the point I want to get up and leave. Interesting that it's all food related noises that affect me negatively and not much else.

Fabulous! Thank you everyone! I am absolutely delighted in knowing there are others out there who experience this!! Thank you for all the great info, the links, and for sharing your experiences!
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Postby pamelam » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:51 pm

this is so interesting! I finally googled what I've been experiencing off and on my entire life and lo and behold other people experience this also.

I first noticed this phenom when I was about 10 years old and my kid brother would draw on our chalkboard. Something about his intensity and the sound of chalk on the board would put me in this trance. However it only happened when HE drew on the board, no one else. Something about his intensity and his breathing....

Today I work in a building where my office is right next to the copy machine. HEAVEN! The sounds of the paper, the squeeky sound of the copy machine door being lifted, the squeeky sounds of the old floor as people shift their feet, the glorious sound of the paper cutter, the stapler....I sit and front of my computer and stare at the screen and I'm completely zoned! haha, doesn't sound too productive does it? Actually, I can snap out of it if I want to, thank goodness. But it is wonderful to be able to experience these sensations.
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby JonRs » Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:32 pm

These noises put me in a relaxed trance. I put them in order of discovery and the trance only occurs if performed by someone other than myself.
Turning pages of a Newspaper.
Bob Ross.
Writing with chalk.
Sucking on a lozenges.
Fast laptop & computer typists.
Horse walking or galloping in a movie.
Car Wash.
Haircuts by a female.
Clicking of a game controller.
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby kgreener » Tue May 21, 2013 7:02 pm

I'm really glad I found this post...I have experienced the same thing my whole life. The sounds of folding paper, library books with plastic covers opening and closing, the scratching of a pencil across paper, they all put me in a trance-like state that you all have been describing. When I hear these noises I become extremely happy and sleepy, and often don't realize that I've been sitting somewhere completely motionless for a prolonged period of time. However, certain other noises drive me to the brink of insanity. Noises such as people chewing loudly, or reaching their hands into chip bags. I have always wondered what causes this to happen...I read an article once that sounded like it was vaguely describing something similar to this phenomenon, and it said that certain people are just "noise sensitive", and it listed a lot of the noises that people listed on here as being enjoyable/annoying. The article didn't mention there being any sort of emotional connection tied to these noises. I wish I could remember where I found the article, but alas, it was months ago that I read it...

If anyone else finds the noise of pencil on paper to be enjoyable, this YouTube video is heavenly to me, I could listen to it for hours - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svNoB9dWDi4
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Re: Sound and how the brain reacts to it

Postby LMCasey » Mon Jun 03, 2013 12:56 am

I haven't read all the posts in this thread, but by now, perhaps you have discovered all of the ASMR videos on YouTube. ASMR really helps reduce anxiety in my case.
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