Alpha Waves and Meditation - I

Introduction

6/16/20232 min read

Alpha waves and Meditation

INTRO-PART 01

Do you know how neurons conduct electrical activities inside the brain?

Well inside the neuron cell is full of positive potassium ions and outside full of positive sodium ions. The membrane makes sure these two are separate sides of the membrane, creating voltage and chemical potential.

When a neuron sends a chemical signal to the next nearby neuron, according to voltage potential produced - if it crosses the threshold, a certain voltage ion gated channels in the neuron axons lets a certain amount of positive potassium and sodium ions go through the membrane, the process is called action potential. This causes consistency to the next channel to the next one, therefore reaching at the end sending chemical signals to the next neuron cell, and the same process is gone through.

The collective activity of many neurons firing action potentials simultaneously gives rise to brain waves. These waves can be detected and measured using techniques such as electroencephalography (EEG). EEG measures the electrical activity of the brain using electrodes placed on the scalp. The signals picked up by the electrodes represent the summed activity of thousands or millions of neurons in specific regions of the brain.

There are different types of brain waves associated with different states of consciousness, cognitive processes, and physiological conditions.

1.Delta waves: These slow waves (0.5-4 Hz) are typically observed during deep sleep and are associated with restorative processes in the brain.

2.Theta waves: These waves (4-8 Hz) are often seen during drowsiness, dreaming, and deep meditation.

3.Alpha waves: These waves (8-12 Hz) are prominent when a person is awake but in a relaxed state, such as during meditation or closing their eyes.

4.Beta waves: These waves (12-30 Hz) are associated with active thinking, problem-solving, and focused attention.

5.Gamma waves: These high-frequency waves (30-100 Hz or even higher) are linked to cognitive processes such as memory formation, perception, and conscious awareness.

Later in part 02 will discuss the alpha waves.