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Is iDosing a real craze or real crazy?

4 years ago writer Parenting + Technology London, UK

Most parents are familiar with the sssh-sssh sound seeping out from the headphones of their offspring. But there could be more to it, namely ‘iDosing’, a fad that involves using two different tones - ‘binaural beats’ - played simultaneously to alter mood and tinker with brainwave frequency. Essentially, getting high online.

Cecil Adams, from The Straight Dope, says binaural beats were first described in 1839. Supposedly they cause the brain to sort of average out the two sounds and create a new trippy sound inside your head. Some hear it, some don’t.

The iDosing sounds have been likened to a ship’s horn played over and over or screechy synthesizers on crack (yes, the actual drug). Different frequencies, say beta for awake states or alpha when relaxed, result in different moods.

True, there have been studies of surgery patients who required less sedation and showed less anxiety after listening to music with binaural beats. While other studies (you know those scientists), showed no differences between people listening to blank tapes and those bopping to binaurals.

So why not induce a drug-free druggy state? On the site, sounds are for sale labelled ‘Viagra,’ ’Adderall,’ and ‘White Crosses,’ to name a few.

The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs bit on this and issued a warning to parents, saying the sites often led to real drug sites selling paraphernalia.

Warning signs? Be worried if your child has to be surgically separated from headphones, squirms around in the dark a lot, and has a browsing history of iDosing sites.

Believers maintain that binaural beats can be used to help you quit smoking or to counter PMS. Sceptics, however, have made pretty odd films of iDosing to Neil Diamond. Warning: it’s weird.

By Star Lawrence

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