Sometimes a gentle background sound is more effective for sleep and relaxation than the complete absence of sound. Why is this? The answer probably lies in our biology. The brain notices sudden, isolated sound changes. With an absence of sound, the brain remains more active as it tries to pick out frequencies. The ringing in your ears may become more noticeable, and there is nothing to protect your sleep from a sudden disruptive burst of noise.
White noise contains all sound frequencies combined together, so the brain has a hard time focusing on a particular sound, such as a conversation in the next room or a noisy neighbor. Imagine you are having a conversation with someone in a quiet restaurant; you’ll have no problem hearing them. Now imagine a room full of people all talking at once. It’ll be very difficult to hear that one person, even if they are close by. The brain blends all these different voices into a constant sea of sound that approximates white noise. Distracting sounds elsewhere in the restaurant will be very hard to detect. This is the strategy used by sound machines and relaxation music. Using mechanical and/or digital sounds, they will mask out other noises with gentle and relatively unchanging background noise that will quickly become unnoticeable to you.
One thing to watch out for in choosing a sound machine is to pick one that doesn’t loop. The key is randomness, not sound loops. Most electronic white noise machines do in fact loop; by looping I am referring to the playing of a short segment of sound over and over.The brain can unconsciously pick up patterns, leaving you more annoyed than asleep if you hear a sound repeating. With a sound machine that generates or creates its own sounds the brain has no repeating pattern of sound to pick up on. The result is will allow you to sleep better.
Does your baby sleep better in a running car or with the vacuum or a fan on? If so, a white noise machine sleep aid may be just the thing to aid your baby to sleep through the night and develop good sleep patterns. Helping your baby establish a regular sleep schedule can be a challenge for new parents. White noise can help your baby sleep better and be less apt to startle awake from other noises in the house. Be aware that babies have sensitive hearing and it is best to run white noise and other soothing sounds at the lowest volume that is effective.
Mike Kirtley is the author and he encourages you to visit his website at www.naturestapestry.com to find the white noise machine that is right for you.
Article Source: EzineArticles.com/expert/Mike_Kirtley/1195395
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