What it Means
ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response. It’s a phrase that was coined back in 2010. However, the fact is, the sensation humans get from ASMR has always existed. We would best describe it as the opposite of nails on a chalkboard. It is the soothing feeling you get when you listen to raindrops tap the roof of your car in a thunderstorm or the tingling sensation you get from watching someone tap their nails against a desk. To put it simply, ASMR is a sensation that is audio and/or visually induced. It has been described as an extremely pleasant electrical sensation that is somewhat like “pins and needles”. Hence why it is colloquially called “head tingles” or a “brain orgasm”.
Benefits of ASMR
ASMR is a non-medicated treatment which can aid with relaxation, as well as controlling anxiety/depression, and/or insomnia. In a 2015, two psychology researchers at Swansea University in Wales published a peer review study on ASMR¹. Out of 475 subjects, 98 percent of them reported using it for simple relaxation. 82 percent reported that it helped them sleep. And, 70 percent said they used it for stress relief. Only five percent said that they used it for sexual stimulation in spite of the fact that it is often described as an orgasm for your brain. The majority of respondents, in fact, stated that it brought them absolutely no sexual pleasure.
Millions of people are seeking out ASMR videos every day on Youtube just so they can relax or sleep to tingling sensations. And the sky is the limit! We encourage you to check out a few videos to find which genre works for you.
Some members of our staff reported feeling relaxed listening to thunderstorm ASMR videos at bedtime. While others like to ease their stress to videos showing hair brushing and scalp massages. A few have pointed out how the sound of walking of gravel is a favorite of theirs.
So, if you need to relax, need help with insomnia, or are just plain curious about ASMR, do a search on YouTube and you’ll find many videos about it. And, it’s quite possible that those quiet soothing sounds will enrich your life in some way. Can’t hurt to try it, right? After all, it’s painless, innocuous, and can be fun. Best of all, it’s free!
¹2015) Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR): a flow-like mental state. PeerJ 3:e851 https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.851(
Video credit: NatureisBeautiful2017 | Youtube