The Harmful Effects and Dangers of Using Binaural Beats

I have tried binaural beats to get into a deep relaxed state of mind during meditation and for many other purposes for which they are being promoted nowadays.side effects of binaural beats

It’s everywhere on the internet now and you will find a lot of such audios on You Tube for free since many people have learned to compose them now.

The first time I used a brainwave entrainment audio was for lucid dreaming as I was too obsessed with my dream world back then.

I had some significantly positive results with the regular use of these tracks before it started working the other way around.

Some people have reported great success with brainwave entrainment tracks and I really don’t have any intention to prove them wrong, this is my personal opinion and from my experience, I consider it as a threat to a person’s inner peace.

I don’t have a long list of brainwave entrainment dangers, usually they are not much harmful for a person who is in a perfect health condition, but through this post I want to alert you to be more careful especially with the quality of audios that you select.

Commonly Known Brainwave Entrainment Dangers

It is good to consult your doctor before trying binaural beats as it is hazardous for people with heart diseases, seizures, pregnancy, epilepsy etc.

You should not listen to these sounds while doing something that requires your strong attention like while driving or operating any machinery as it alters your mind state.

I would strongly emphasize on the age factor, these tracks are not suitable for individuals below 18 years.

Why Some People Love Brainwave Entrainment Meditation?

These audios are mostly used for achieving deep relaxed mind state during meditation which is also referred as the alpha state and the deeper level that is known as the theta state.

Makers of brainwave entrainment tracks promote it as the shortcut for experiencing Zen like meditation.

So, are they really that effective?

I would say yes, because I have heard many people claiming to have had the best ever experiences of their life by using binaural beats for meditation, and obviously with such a large group of people excessively using it we can infer that it must be effective.

For me it never worked in such a way that I could be positive about it, I admit that I had some sort of experiences with it where my consciousness got altered, but it pales in comparison to what I have achieved with my usual meditation and creative visualization sessions.

Digital Magic Drug

A lot of websites are selling their brainwave entrainment programs by promoting it as an alternative to psychedelic drugs.

Since the audios can alter one’s consciousness, people are using it to get into trance like states and to have experiences similar to the ones induced by LSD.

I am not a supporter of any method for experiencing different mind states except the natural ones; still I am damn sure that using these audios for such purposes will only invite mind related troubles.

Why Am I against Binaural Beats? – My Experience

I have had some amazing spiritual experiences and I am a regular lucid dreamer, but I didn’t use these audios to get there.

Initially, I was too excited about binaural beats and it worked well for me for a while to achieve deep relaxed mind states during meditation, however soon things started to change.

Due to the consistent use of these audios I observed that my mind became more restless, and then I began to have headaches, what was even more troublesome is the frequent nightmares that followed.

I have heard the same type of stories many times where people lost their peace of mind due to the use of binaural beats like me and this nightmare thing is also pretty much common.

Different stuff works for different people, I got extremely irritated with brainwave entrainment meditation because it was working in the opposite way for me.

I agree that lot of people find it very safe and effective; they are just beats that are produced by using waves of two different frequencies in the right and left channels of the headphone.

Input of sound waves of two different frequencies in both the ears is meant to take a person into the alpha/theta state of mind, in fact it is the same thing that happens during meditation and deep relaxations.

I would always recommend the natural ways to anyone, but I won’t really stop you from using them if you want to test it for yourself because as I mentioned earlier it works well for some people.

Forming one’s opinion based on experience is always the best choice, in case you want to try them before making a decision then here’s a post that may help you in doing that – 5 Safety Measures for Using Binaural Beats – Avoid Side Effects

 

I have a very positive opinion about om harmonics meditation technology as I have been using these audio tracks for a very long time now and I find them very effective. Even though it is a modification of the regular brainwave entrainment audios, I found it extremely helpful and safe because the thing that annoyed me while using binaural beats is exactly what these guys rectified using something that they call “the MRT technology”.

I hope you enjoyed this post. What are your views about these audios? Has it worked well for you? What are your experiences with brainwave entrainment tracks?

Please share your views so that it could help the other visitors of this post, I would highly appreciate that. (Your email id is safe and it is not visible to others, you can also use your secondary email id for commenting)

You can also mail me your queries at hari@zerotoinfinitude.com, I will be very happy to help you.

If this post was helpful to you then please spread the word by sharing it on your online social networks.

61 thoughts on “The Harmful Effects and Dangers of Using Binaural Beats

  1. Sarah

    Hi Hari
    This is a very interesting article as I agree there is so much about the binaural beats and brainwave entrainment around on the internet and as some one interested in meditation I was wondering if it was good or not. I have tried something similar and it has the noise of rain and and another noise in the background that is supposed to be brainwave entrainment but I never really enjoy it much or feel that good afterwards even though it says it helps your brain reach the alpha states. I prefer to listen to guided meditations that help me visualize or just relaxation music.

    Sarah

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Thank you for reading it Sarah and I am glad that you liked it.. :)..
      Using the guided meditations and relaxation music is very good indeed but yes these Binaural beats are often not very good for ears and mind..

      Reply
  2. Jude Banks

    Hari, interesting post.

    I recall many years ago I was having trouble sleeping. A friend gave me a meditation sleep tape. After listening to it each night for several weeks, I got to the point where instead of putting me to sleep, it kept me even more awake. It made me restless, and uneasy. I now wonder whether it had those binaural beats, because instinctively I stopped using it.

    I love classical music, my favorite being Mozart, Debussy, and others. Hope they don’t have those artificial beats!

    Jude

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      You could have just tried simple hypnosis methods or relaxation music because these binuaral beats are irritating sometimes.. there is an easy way to find it out “music that is not good for ears is not good for mind as well :)”
      Don not worry about listening to the music, it is always good to listen what you love to.. I hope it helped.. thanks for reading…

      Reply
      1. Vb

        Last night I was listening to this beats they just continued in my mind even after stopping them. I think we should first consult a doctor before listening to them.They can be harmful if used for longer times..

        Reply
        1. HARI S NAIR Post author

          That is why I specifically say to avoid the extreme use of them, especially doing something like playing it hile you sleep. Though I don’t think it can cause much trouble if someone knows how to keep an eye on their body’s natural reactions to those sounds.

          Reply
  3. tina

    I checked out your aticle. Very well written. I had no idea before I read what these were and the impact. Thank you for providing such informative information.

    tina

    Reply
  4. Javin Jolly

    Looks like I’m a little late to the party, but I would still like to leave a comment nonetheless. I started using binaural beats about 6-7 months ago to help me study. At first I was skeptical because I thought it would hinder my concentration. To my surprise, not only was I able to concentrate MORE on my studies, but my brain completely zoned out the audio. I for one love it, but it looks like it doesn’t work for everybody.

    Reply
      1. Juanita

        Am so scared. I never had any knowledge of binaural beat only found it on the youtub whike searching for ways to heal my blurry eyes. I listen to one that claims it helps that. After i continuied listening to thr rest for hours. Its been two days already and i have a confused state of mind. Expecially when am lying down alone or not talking. What does this indicate. Do i need help or it will subside with time. Am i in some kind of trouble.

        Reply
        1. HARI S NAIR Post author

          Don’t worry Juanita, just stop using them anymore and try to do something that will relax your mind. See for two three days, if the problem continues than do consult a doctor.

          Reply
  5. greg

    Yeah, I agree.

    I have used binaural beats and they make me feel weird and just ill….sometimes like I’m getting the flu.

    They cause me to have memory problems and difficulty concentrating afterwards. Seems like people act strange towards me after I use them….like they’re upsetting my inner state leading to negative outer manifestations.

    They also disturb my sleep and sometimes give me insomnia.

    Last but not least, I have a very high libido and they all but destroy my sex-drive.

    Practice makes perfect. Meditate, meditate, meditate and all else will fall into place. All this technology is not necessary. Our Creator doesn’t need technology to reach us….and we don’t need it to reach him.

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Your experience with it is undoubtedly worse than mine and I agree with you Greg that we don’t need actually need these technological aids to meditate at the first place but, some of them do make the process easier because they take you to the deeper level. I am not promoting binaural beats because of my experience but it does help many people. I will however advise to first try meditation without external aids and if necessary than use some guided meditation(like Christie’s Heart Center Opening Meditation) or try what I have suggested in the post i.e Omharmonics.

      Reply
      1. HARI S NAIR Post author

        I have never known anyone who has been afflicted with anything near to a disease like that because of binaural beats, I think it is all just rumors. Subliminal messages on the other hand has no side effect, it is just hidden suggestions that are intended to reach our subconscious mind.

        Reply
        1. Malka Kob

          Hari, it is not rumors. I used just the trial recording of one of the very expensive programs to help your life with binaural music and messages.
          I developed a horrible case of vértigo. I could not lay down without the room spinning wildly around me.
          It took weeks to get rid of it. I am not using it again. Ever.

          Reply
          1. HARI S NAIR Post author

            That’s really a very bad side effect, I haven’t heard of such a thing before. Thank you so much Malka for sharing your experience, I think now I have a stronger reason to avoid these audios and make others aware of the same.

    2. Summer Girl

      Hey, Greg. Did you consider that maybe your symptoms might be due to a detoxification process that the beats are possibly aiding? So I came across this site because I was googling about people having nightmares after listening to beats, or similar strategies. Ive been listening to them on and off for approximately three years now, and just recently I started having nightmares, or night terrors. I suffer from some mild night terrors as it is, and I have had some bad experiences with the beats here and there, but nothing too significant until now. It wasn’t until I just read your post that I realized I have been having similar symptoms to yours, and it dawned on me that some beats or sounds are supposed to help one detoxify. Thoughts, anyone?

      Reply
      1. HARI S NAIR Post author

        Though one may always argue whether the use of these beats are safe or not, what ultimately matters is your health. As I always say, if it suits you then go for it, if not then do not.

        The concept of detoxification is something you want to believe to actually keep using it, why would you invite any trouble if many people have already been there and know the consequences?. I am not really against these audios, but I will suggest you be careful and avoid the extreme use. I do not know for what purpose you prefer to use brainwave entrainment but 3 years are more than enough to evaluate how it is affecting your life.. would you mind sharing with us how exactly is it turning out to be beneficial for you?

        Reply
  6. aljohn chris

    Good to know that some binaural beats are good…

    my first encounter about it made my worst nightmare….
    pokemon lavender town syndrome .. Have You Heard that?

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Yes Aljohn I have heard of that pokemon lavender town syndrome but I have not met anyone who has experienced it before can you please reply with your experience if you don’t mind I am just curious about it.

      As far as I know that creepy music is not binuaral beats, frequency of that music has caused troubles but binuaral beats does’nt have that much danger..thanks you for commenting!

      Reply
      1. aljohn chris

        There is actually have effect on me, you can have seizure, headaches, migraine or nausea….
        my last encounter in it gave me trembles and made me a headache if only you have sensitive ears …
        that’s what I knew..

        Reply
        1. HARI S NAIR Post author

          I have mentioned it in the post that you should be careful if you have any of those afflictions but that the pokemon game thing is not related to binaural beats as per my knowledge.

          Reply
      2. Derrick

        So no one should use them? Im asking cause I used one for unwanted body hair and its working but you Kindof made me worryed now pls respond…

        Reply
  7. Rajeesh

    Hari sir i dont have much knowledge about this.two days before i started using this but i just want to know whether there is any side effects of using these audios so your post help me..i really wanna thank you for sharing your experience with us..as you mentioned some troubles that you faced while using these audios and these are commom problems most of the people face but from my opinion these may be the symptoms of pineal gland activation or kundalini awakening..im not sure but may be you are near to your 3rd eye opening…

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Good to hear that this post was of use to you Rajeesh. I am aware of the third eye opening symptoms and pineal gland activation, I have even wrote a post on it “7 Tips for Opening Your Third Eye Chakra“. But what I experienced with the use of brainwave entrainment audios was due to those sounds only, still sometimes when I try it out of curiosity generated by other people’s claims, it only annoys me like it has in the past.

      Reply
  8. Derrick

    Side comment. Could it be cause you guys used them past 12 hrs a day? Cause if you go over 12 hrs it has negative effects. Srry if it feels like I’m defending it a lot but it was a medical tool doctors used so I think its a nice natural way of doing things. Have a nice day everyone. 🙂

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Unwanted body hair, man I am hearing such use of binaural beats for the first time and I am quite surprised by that. Anyways, Derrick there is no harm in using them if you feel it works well for you. I did’nt use it for more than 1-2 hrs a day and I am not saying that everyone will have the same experience.

      As I have mentioned in the post, there are people who are highly benefited by binaural beats, so I am not telling anyone to not use it, I want people to take their own decision by considering my experience, that’s all.

      Reply
  9. yoshi1994

    Hi, i’m trying to get info on binaural beats and came across this, figured i might as well ask since you seem knowledgable enough.
    i need to study for long periods at a time like 12hrs or so, pretty often. i also suffer from a severe lack of focus. have found today that listening to binaural beta frequencies gets me focused so i am planning on using them now all the time when i study, so basically super frequently. which brings me here cause i am wondering about the dangers or side effects with this prolonged type of use. i like this stuff cause i dont want to feed my body with government regulated meth poison or any other drug, so natural ways seem appealing.
    do you know if there would be a danger in using the focusing frequency, never the deep delta i believe it is waves, the ones you and others have used for meditation, sleep and such, very frequently? thanks a lot

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Yoshi, the discussion here is about the dangers of binaural beats, so what we have talked equally applies for everyone who uses it. As you can read the comments, people have had different types of experiences with these audio tracks. But as I said, a lot of people use them without experiencing any problem at all, so if it suits you well and works good then just continue.

      Reply
  10. Geri Narvaez

    Hello Hari. I was looking to get some in depth information about the use of these frequencies, as I have a friend who stated to me that she watched a video (on YouTube, no less) about using binaural beats to change the color of her eyes, attract a mate, lose weight speed up hair growth and all sorts of other things… The directions were to use/listen them for 30mins to an hour daily, and you would see results after 1 month. I have always been into natural medicine and healthy eating for weight loss and cosmetic benefits, but I have not ever heard of altering your eye color and such. I thought eye color was determined by DNA… What are your thought on the use of binaural beats for such things?? There HAS TO BE side effects from changing one’s eye color if that is even medically possible..

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Look Geri, I won’t specifically say that changing eye color could have any side effects. I have heard a lot that such a thing is possible using various processes like meditation, hypnosis etc. I would love to be practically able to do that because the fact that mind has control over the body is well known to me, so I will not deny that possibility.

      However, since you might have already known from this post, I am not a big fan of these audios, so if it is about the side effects of doing anything using these audios, I will say yes it can be harmful because I just don’t trust it.

      Reply
  11. Paulina

    Are there many types of Binaural Beats? because I do listen to something that sounds more like a nice relaxing echo rather than a continuous beeping or electric sound. Do you have an example for Binaural Beats?
    I listen to this about 30 minutes a day, is that considered dangerous? because I’ve been doing this for almost a month and I really like to use it, it gets me into a calm relaxing state.
    Paulina

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Binaural beats are one of its kind, it is an audio that is formed “in our mind” as a result of audio waves of two different frequencies introduced to each ear, the frequency can vary depending on the purpose.

      To know it, you can try playing that soundtrack in the speakers rather than headphones if it is still the same then it is not binaural beats. I never tell anyone specifically if any audio (even binaural beats) because the effect varies from person to person. If it works for you without any problem then it is fine, but if you find out that it is causing even a slight problem then stop right away.

      Reply
  12. Dave

    I used a product called Holosync (deep delta + carrier manipulation) more than 10 years ago.
    Something went really wrong.
    Still experiencing muscle spams around the face, dizziness, headaches, etc.. The damage is permanent.
    They actually even advised to push through.

    My advice: listen to your body, a soon a it gives you ANY negative indication (and deep delta will nearly always) just stop completely and forever.
    Do NOT listen to your mind that looks at the so called benefits, because it usually starts with the mind finding some lack, then it discovers binaural beats and thinks now it can get somewhere. And it can go so far as to actually damage the body in which it lives.

    Placebo effect accounts for 70% with things that are in the mind (e.g. anti-depressants). So don’t listen to all these ‘positive’ reports from people.
    There’s also active placebo, they give the patient a sugar pill with a substance that makes him/her dizzy, nauseated, etc.. This works even better than placebo because the patient can now FEEL IT”S WORKING. Active placebo has been found unethical and can no longer be used.

    So if you feel anything, don’t think it’s working, think it’s creating damage and STOP FOREVER.

    Best,
    Dave

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      “Listen to your body”, right there, you have said the perfect thing. Whenever we are not doing something good for our health, our body tells us. I had headaches initially yet I continued and that’s why it was so troublesome to me.

      However, Dave, I would like to say that these audios are not like placebos because they work by changing our brainwave frequencies and it actually works on the physical level. Some people are so obsessed with such things that they completely ignore the mild effects whereas others are too scared to even try, I believe there should be a balance.

      Reply
  13. Julie

    I’m commenting to warn others of possible side effects from binaural beats. Three months ago, I listened to a binaural beats soundtrack that claimed to help with headaches. The produced a very strange sensation- a cold feeling on my forehead and my headache was gone. It was amazing but five minutes into the track I saw two zigzag flashes in my field of vision. I immediately removed the earbuds and felt alright so went to sleep without too much worry that something was wrong. The following day I had vision problems- flashing lights, and after a trip to the ER it was found that I had a hole in my retina:I got it fixed and all was fine until the next time I used my headphones – a new hole in my retina, same eye as before. I got that one fixed. Then approx 4 weeks from the initial flash I got more flashes in my field of vision (no hole in retina this time), pain behind my eye, loud ringing in ears,extreme sensitivity and pain upon hearing sound. Dr thinks it may have been injury to the optic nerve. Injuries to the nerve do not present symptoms until 4-6 weeks after injury. This was a horrible experience for me, and though I am recovering, I still have some constant low level ringing in my ears. There are other stories of these inducing seizures in perfectly healthy people. I recommend you stay far away from binaural beats!!

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      My god, I am really shocked to hear your story, Julie. I have known a few of incidents where people reported of seizures, I guess you should have stopped when it happened the first time, for some people like you and me, these binaural beats don’t work well that’s why I wrote this article to make people aware of the fact that these tracks are not good for everyone, better try it and stop whenever you feel it is not right for you.

      Reply
  14. Ryan

    I just tried them for the first time (before reading this) and a lot of them made my ears hurt and gave me a headache. They were supposed to help me relax but all they did was exelerate my heart rate. I hope others find these better!

    Reply
  15. Erik

    Okay I just found out about Binaural Beats, I think I found it randomly first using Spooky2Rife on youtube where they used a beat to fix my pelvis that is tilted. And after listening for 15 minutes there was a clear difference in my pelvis, there was no longer an uncomfortable feeling around my hips at all. I was amazed to say the least and got curious what else these type of frequences could do.

    I did many different ones, even making your penis larger which actually felt like it worked. However the next day I was going to study for the entire day so I decided to put on different binaural beats that was going to get rid of negative thoughts, improve self-confidence, make you a sex god etc. I listened for a long time that day and after some time I felt abit different. So I wanted to get rid of this feeling and even found a “Reverse spell” made my Frequancy Warlock Sublime Messages on youtube that I listened too.

    After listening for so much that they my head starting getting uncomfortable thoughts and some guys on Youtube commented that they also felt different after using Binaural Beats and was scared that the youtube have used some black magic mind control or something on them. I was going a bit crazy there for a few min and my mind felt superactive, could not really concentrate and meditating was difficult. I am calmer now, after a night of, pretty bad, sleep. I believe time will heal this.

    Meditation is the way to go. I will probably take a few days off Binaural Beats and only use Spooky2Rife from time to time when I have a real medical issue. Again, meditation is the happy and good way. Glad it only took me two days of using Binaural Beats to realise that.

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Well, it is no black magic, but yes using subliminal messages without proper knowledge is not advised because you never know what information is being fed to your subconscious mind, however you don’t really need to worry because your subconscious mind has natural protection mechanisms to deal with any type of mind control maybe that’s why it made you feel in a certain way so that you can avoid using it any further. Meditation is a gradual way to achieve inner peace and to know yourself better, however, it indeed is also the best path.

      Reply
  16. Ju

    Hi I used a couple of these from Youtine today. One was for nerve regeneration and healing the other was for deoression and anxiety I did about 20 mins each. After I finished I began to feel uneasy and stimulated. Within an hour I had the worst panic attack and felt so anxious. I hadnt felt lile this since my anxiety started. Im still pulsating through my whole body and scared to go to sleep. Everytime O feel myself falling my body jerks awak. My head feels strange lile a detuned radio and I feel detached. Please tell me this will calm down. Im scared ive done permenant damage. Im scared of falling asleep at this stage HELP!

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Hi Ju,
      First off calm down, there are rare chances that binaural beats alone could be responsible for what you are experiencing. I recommend you to consult a neurologist as soon as possible because this definitely would be something related to your nervous system and I have read some cases like this before, do not think of any other alternative right now.

      Reply
      1. Ju

        Im off ti see an ENT first as my sinuses have been terrible for ages but I agree its Nuerology I need. Ive been having issues for months and this has taught me its probably down to the problems in my ear. Im crossing everything that my Brain will return to normal eventually but im still having intense spasms from the music whoch goes through my whole body. Im starting to think this overstimulation of nerves has been going on all along and was amplified by the music. I really hope i’m not stuck like this as my problems stsrted in January. Shame Nuerology waiting lists are very long I might have to go private. Cross everything for me im getting desperate. Taking beta blockers have calmed my body down a bit which is good

        Reply
        1. HARI S NAIR Post author

          Yeah Ju as I have said before I think you should be consulting a neurologist as soon as possible but since it is taking time, I guess an advice from a general physician may be helpful or you can also try finding help online from someone in the field of neurology, I understand you are having troubles but I am not the right person to suggest you anything on this matter, it is about your health and you must seek a medical help.

          Reply
  17. Mari

    I slept with the beat, and got a horrible experience. I got “hado-ken (dragon ball…) like pulse first, and then I could not move my body not breath, and took a great effort to wake up screaming to stop the beat. I had really strong headache again on the next day. I’m glad to find a piece of info of possible negative effect as I was searching for the reason. Thank you!

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Good to know that you became aware of the negative effects through my blog, Mari. I would say it is never safe to sleep while listening to such audios because it can mess up your natural sleep cycles. Thank you for the comment 🙂

      Btw what you experienced was sleep paralysis which is a perfectly normal condition, the body is asleep while the mind is awake so we feel as if we are unable to move or breathe, it is an illusion.

      Reply
  18. Fatima

    Hello sir
    I want to know that if I listen them if I am 17 years old is that can harm me …if I’m using these for changing my eye colour ??

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      As you can see Fatima, I don’t recommend the use of these beats to people of any age, but if you want to give it a try then do it with caution without going to the extreme. Though I am aware that many people say it can change your eye color but there is no proper evidence to it.

      Reply
  19. Shefali

    Hi, do you think subliminal with overlapping affirmations ( recorded by yourself) is better than binaural beats. Or overlapping voices are more harmful?

    Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      Do you mean Paraliminals? They are fine, and if it is your own recording why would you actually worry because you know what is going into your subconscious mind right?

      On the other hand, when it comes to subliminal audios especially which are hidden messages that cannot be directly interpreted by listening alone, you need to be careful about who is creating that because you need to be cautious about what is going into your mind.

      Reply
    1. HARI S NAIR Post author

      John,
      Even I will say it that bluntly, I don’t think they are actually beneficial in any way but at the same time I cannot ignore some awesome programs that I have used which made use of those sounds properly and I did not feel any problem. It suits some people, maybe it is a placebo effect but whatever it is. I always warn people before using these sounds.

      Reply

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