ASMR: Does whispering give you tingles?


We're surrounded by sounds like cars driving, planes flying, trees blowing in the wind every day.

They're sounds we are familiar with, sounds we know.

But for others sounds of whispering, tapping and scratching are being used to help with relaxing and de-stressing.

Gibi is a 23-year-old YouTube sensation who uses similar unique sounds to make ASMR videos.

ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response and in less than ten years, ASMR videos have developed a huge online following with some videos generating millions of hits.

“I'll get like a soft makeup brush and brush the microphone,” Gibi described.

Sounds of soft brushing, tapping even whispering give some people a tingling or static like sensation.

“People use it for so many different things whether it's just to relax or they have anxiety or depression or PTSD,” Gibi said.

JC Cox understands why many like it.

“It's a moment of escape too,” Cox said.

He says for thousands of years people have been using what's called the six healing sounds to stay healthy and feel good.

“Sounds can definitely move and create energy and give us good feelings,” he said.

Cox says sound is one of the oldest forms of medicine. He uses it at the Naturally Organic Healing Center.

“So, we use these sounds to release these acquired emotions we let go of the worry, we let go of the frustration, we let go of the nervousness the anxiety we let go of fears then what's left is our

original virtuous nature,” Cox said.

Chris Heavey professor of psychology at UNLV says ASMR videos give people a uniquely pleasant experience that allows them to really focus of what they are hearing and seeing.

“I think the reason so many people are interested in it is because so many people struggle with sleep and relaxation and that's a very widespread concern,” Dr. Heavey said.

Heavey says about 30% of our country's population worries about getting enough sleep.

He believes we'll see more research into the effectiveness of ASMR.

“We'll have more people trying to understand what's the basis of this effect. Where does it come from? What are physiological underline mechanisms that lead to this effect because right now we really don't know much about any of that,” Dr. Heavey said.

Because of its growing popularity, Gibi tries to make about 3 videos a week

“It's free, it's natural and it's really, really helpful for a lot of people,” Gibi said.

She thinks ASMR isn't just a trend. She says it's here to stay.

“I think the more content we put out and the more different platforms that ASMR is exposed to people, more people are realizing that they may enjoy it as well so we are short of just adding on to the community,” Gibi said.

The best audio equipment has become a competitive factor when it comes to making ASMR videos.

Now ASMR artists are using highly sensitive microphones to capture the unique sounds.

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