Humming is acknowledged as a way to “harmonize” body and mind, but it is important to
understand what makes a hum so enlivening and healthy. The miracle of the human body is that
when the air pressure is just right the vocal cords produce a regular soundwave which resonates
through our whole being and carries our sound without effort thanks to the wisdom and creativity
of the human body. The vibrational effects of humming on the body are of high benefits
physically, mentally and emotionally. The inner muscles of our body allow the vocal cords to
vibrate and to resonate through our bones and cells. The vagus nerve is stimulated through the
vibration from humming; this nerve branches out and connects your body’s major organs to
facilitate the mind-body connection. Vagus nerve fibres found throughout your stomach and
intestines, diaphragm, heart, lungs, throat, inner ear and facial muscles form your enteric nervous
system or second brain. When you activate your vagus nerve, it turns off your fight or flight
reflex – it tells your brain and heart to calm down. It triggers the release of feel-good
neurotransmitters including oxytocin to promote feelings of relaxation and it tells your body to
rest and digest. The aim is to slow your breathing when you want to stimulate your vagus nerve.
This stimulates your relaxation response and signals to your parasympathetic nervous system that
you are safe. Research shows that humming can improve airflow between the sinuses and the
nasal cavity. This may help protect the health of your sinuses by the turbulence in the air created
from humming. Humming dramatically increases the amount of nitric oxide released when
exhaling which shows air is moving out of the sinuses well (and that’s important because if air
and mucus become trapped inside the sinuses, the result can be pain and infection which nitric
oxide can fight against).
Final Paper