Brainwave entrainment, also referred to as brainwave synchronization and neural entrainment, refers to the capacity of the brain to naturally synchronize its brainwave frequencies with the rhythm of periodic external stimuli, most commonly auditory, visual, or tactile. Brainwave entrainment technologies are used to induce various brain states, such as relaxation or sleep, by creating stimuli that occur at regular, periodic intervals to mimic electrical cycles of the brain during the desired states, thereby “training” the brain to consciously alter states. Recurrent acoustic frequencies, flickering lights, or tactile vibrations are the most common examples of stimuli applied to generate different sensory responses.
Neural oscillations are rhythmic or repetitive electrochemical activity in the brain and central nervous system. Such oscillations can be characterized by their frequency, amplitude and phase. Neural tissue can generate oscillatory activity driven by mechanisms within individual neurons, as well as by interactions between them. They may also adjust frequency to synchronize with the periodic vibration of external acoustic or visual stimuli.