ASMR is described as involuntary “brain tingles” that are extremely soothing, relaxing, and occasionally pleasurable by people who have experienced it.
Many videos are uploaded recently on YouTube that make use of ASMR as their trend goes viral. These videos, which have collected millions of views on the internet, are frequently used to induce sleep or reduce tension.
Content creators use high-quality microphones to play out typical ASMR triggers like light tapping, whispering, chewing, or someone carefully performing a manual job, and people just love it.
Have you ever wondered about the perspective of doctors regarding ASMR? Well, this article is all about their theories and logic.
What Is the Science of ASMR?
Sadly, there isn’t a study done. Even though the term was developed in 2010, academics are only now beginning to investigate ASMR. The majority of what we know about ASMR is subjective, and not everyone feels it.
However, recent research shows that your capacity to experience ASMR may be related to neural pathways.
· Initial Research
One of the first pieces of research done on ASMR was published in 2015, explaining an overlap between ASMR and synesthesia. It is a neurological disorder in which several senses are activated simultaneously and unusual for most individuals. A person with synesthesia, for example, may claim to “hear color” or “taste sounds.”
Synesthesia affects just 2 to 4% of the general population, affecting 6% of individuals with ASMR.
· MRI scans
In a subsequent study, researchers used MRI scans on individuals to investigate if this ability to “mix” sensory experiences originated in the brain.
When comparing peoples with ASMR to controls, the researchers discovered that those with ASMR had enhanced connection in certain parts of their brain and decreased connectivity in others. It happens especially in the brain’s frontal lobes and sensory regions.
This decreased connection may make it simpler for sensory-emotional associations to form when a person is exposed to an ASMR trigger. Individuals with ASMR also score way higher on some personality characteristics such as Openness-to-Experience. Higher Openness-to-Experience scores are associated with increased sensory sensitivity.
· Social Behavior
ASMR, like virtual grooming, might be a form of this social behavior. “It goes much further since it’s virtual grooming by a stranger, “according to doctors. ASMR videos fulfill all of the criteria for sustaining social interactions:
Someone speaks gently to you, looks at you with real concern, and makes no threatening movements, and then your brain begins to move naturally towards trust. It may impose the production of oxytocin and the activation of specific regions of the brain.
· Individual differences
ASMR may be influenced by oxytocin and other neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins. Individual differences in the frequency and sensitivity of those neurotransmitter receptors, according to Richard, may explain why some people do not experience ASMR.
So far, ASMR is still met with suspicion, particularly from those who have never experienced it. According to researchers, criticism may boost the urge to study these types of behavior patterns since ASMR is an individual experience and varies from person to person.
When comparing peoples with ASMR to controls, the researchers discovered that those with ASMR had enhanced connection in certain parts of their brain and decreased connectivity in others.