What Is ASMR: Fascinating Facts About ASMR Videos
You may have recently seen a reference to ASMR in pop culture, or perhaps you experienced the brain tingles yourself after watching videos devoted to this four-letter phenomenon.
So, what is ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) and why is it gaining massive attention? ASMR refers to a tingling sensation that usually begins on the back of the head and runs down the length of the spine in response to certain stimuli, like whispering. Participants say it induces euphoric-like states, relaxation, and helps with falling asleep. Experiencing ASMR through videos and podcasts has become increasingly popular in the last decade, and recent scientific studies demonstrate the health benefits. Here are some interesting facts about ASMR to blow your mind!
Not everyone experiences ASMR
While some people experience ASMR, others don’t! A research study examined the effects of ASMR and revealed that ASMR videos enhance the pleasant feelings only among the ASMR experiencers, who also reported feeling more excited and calm from these videos than non-experiencers. Note that people react differently to ASMR stimuli. In fact, the effects of ASMR stimuli are unique to each individual and everyone has different preferences for ASMR stimuli.
Certain things trigger ASMR
There is a huge range of trigger sounds, including folding towels, crinkling paper, turning pages, tapping, whispering, and even typing. There are also videos more focused on experiences, like sorting trading cards or organizing a work desk. However, researchers have found the top four triggers that include whispering, personal attention, crisp sounds (like, metallic foil, tapping fingernails, and more), and slow movements.
Your personality determines your ASMR experience
Personality traits make a big difference in determining whether you are an ASMR experiencer or not. Recent research examined the association between ASMR and the big-five personality traits. Interestingly, participants who scored high in “openness-to-experience” and “neuroticism” are more likely to be ASMR-experiencers. The research also found that most ASMR experiencers score lower in “extraversion”, “conscientiousness,” and “agreeableness” than ASMR non-experiencers.
ASMR benefits your physical health
Do you know that ASMR can actually benefit your body? One particular ASMR research published in 2018 suggested that ASMR videos can reduce heart rate and increase skin conductance levels to promote relaxation and better sleep, ultimately benefitting the physical health of ASMR experiencers.
Your pupils dilate when you watch ASMR video
You’ve probably heard that your pupils dilate when you have a crush — well, ASMR does the same thing! While many studies pointed out that pupil dilation may be related to relaxation and calmness, it can be further expected that ASMR offers physical benefits. What’s more surprising is that even non-experiencers reported increased pupil size while watching ASMR videos. This might show that ASMR benefits you even when you cannot gain the tingling sensations from them.
The first video meant to trigger ASMR debuted in 2009
The first ASMR artist started her YouTube channel, ‘WhisperingLife’ in 2009 and the debut video was meant to intentionally trigger ASMR through whispering. She is an optician living in England and prefers to keep her name private.
The growing scientific evidence of the benefits of ASMR and its ability to induce relaxation in a digital age is bound to expand the rising enthusiasm in ASMR art and media.