One of the most common ways that stress affects people is lack of sleep, which is why we were interested to read about Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response this week. ASMR is an experience which aims to induce a tingling sensation from the head, to the spine and sometimes to limbs, to the viewer in “response to specific triggering audio and visual stimuli” (Barratt and Davies). It was bought about in 2010 and it is thought to help people; unwind, to relax throughout the day or before going to bed. ASMR has become increasingly popular on platforms such as YouTube. The videos dedicated to ASMR have been viewed more than one million times!
ASMR aims to help lull you into a relaxed state, which can even help overcome insomnia and reduce stress levels.
A study by E. Barratt and N. Davies, published in March 2015, used 475 participants between the ages of 18 to 54 years old and concluded that 98% of them used ASMR for relaxation, 82% used it to help them to fall asleep and 70% used it as a stress relief.
ASMR videos have been compared to meditation in terms of the way they help people to fall into a relaxed state, but just like meditation it doesn’t work for everyone. Some people can experience the tingling and others can’t, however the type of trigger is dependent on the individual. The most common triggers are; whispering, scratching, tapping, and the sound of pages turning. If you want to give this a go but you feel that sounds are not your trigger, try using a head massager instead.