As someone who has struggled with insomnia due to anxiety and stress, I am always looking for ways to improve my sleeping habits. That all changed on one day, with a simple, unassuming trip to YouTube.
ASMR, or Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, is the reaction that some people feel when listening to, feeling, or seeing certain calming stimuli. For example, have you ever gotten goosebumps when someone was brushing your hair? Or, feel a sense of relaxation when listening to someone speak or whisper in a soothing tone? That is ASMR. Some people feel these reactions differently than others. Some may enjoy it, while others may experience what is called “misophonia,” a condition causing anger or disgust in reaction to certain sounds. And some may not experience them at all. It is a very personal experience since it all lies in brain chemistry.
ASMR stems from the release of neurological chemicals such as dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin. So, there is no wonder why so many people love this sensation. “Tingles,” as the ASMR community has lovingly named the reaction viewers get from ASMR, and their lulling properties have drawn a huge following on YouTube. Spanning over millions of videos across the platform, ASMR has exploded in popularity over the last few years. Most importantly, it has been an amazing tool for those who struggle with insomnia. Just like a weighted blanket is made to feel like a hug, ASMR is like having a friend to comfort you.
As someone who has benefited from ASMR greatly since discovering it through YouTube, I have accumulated a few favorite channels throughout the years. A few of my favorite “ASMR-tists” as they are sometimes called include “Karuna Satori ASMR,” “Maddie ASMR” and “Call Me Quiet ASMR.” The ASMR community is incredibly vast, so you are bound to find a channel that resonates with you.
I hope that ASMR can help you as much as it has helped me. It’s amazing how creators on a platform such as YouTube can use neurological science to help people around the world as if they were standing right there in the room with us.