What Is ASMR? All About ASMR Head Tingles
Standing for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, ASMR refers to a sensation felt by some people in response to certain triggers. It usually starts with tingling in the scalp or neck, and can then travel to other parts of the body. This feeling puts the person into a state of hyper-relaxation, just in the same way a massage or meditation might. The feeling is normally brought on by certain triggers, often experienced aurally.
The calmness and tingling in the scalp is usually a response to sound, and this is what makes ASMR so amazing, is its ability to give physical sensations without and physical contact being required. In this way it is most like a guided meditation. Unlike a guided meditation however, the person need not imagine a different scene or environment, this means that ASMR can be a much more mindful practice than guided meditations, because the person is concentrating, and is fully absorbed by what they are seeing and hearing in that very moment.
The most common trigger for ASMR is whispering. You will be able to find videos all over the internet of people whispering, which are purposefully designed to trigger the ASMR of viewers. Whispering is not the only trigger though. Other common triggers include scratching, tapping, blowing, personal attention and concentrating. These last two are different from the others as they are less specific.
Many ASMR videos found online are focused around the trigger of personal attention (often in combination with other triggers). These are normally done through the use of roleplaying techniques. Common scenarios you will see acted out can include haircuts, doctor’s visits, lab tests, cranial nerve exams, facials and massages. All these are acting out situations where the viewer is interacting in a one on one situation with the other person. Often that person is presented as a professional or superior of some kind, yet is making the viewer the center of attention. Some people have suggested that personal attention of this nature is a trigger because it reminds us of the nurturing environments experienced and associated with being a child. Since we are wired to embrace this sort of attention in childhood, the theory is that the ASMR reaction is turning on a deep part of our brain associated with this. However this is certainly just a theory and very little scientific research has been done on ASMR.
ASMR can be a wonderful experience, and can be very relaxing. I suggest you look up some ASMR videos to see if you can get ASMR yourself.