These brainwaves are especially large in the back third of the head. Theta (4–8 Hz) activity generally represents a more daydreamlike, rather spacey state of mind that is associated with mental inefficiency. At very slow levels, theta brainwave activity is a very relaxed state, representing the twilight zone between waking and sleep. Delta brainwaves (.5– 3.5 Hz) are very slow, high-amplitude (magnitude) brainwaves and are what we experience in deep, restorative sleep. In general, different levels of awareness are associated with dominant brainwave states.
It should be noted, however, that each of us always has some degree of each of these various brainwave frequencies present in different parts of our brain. Delta brainwaves will also occur, for instance, when areas of the brain go ‘‘off line’’ to take up nourishment, and delta is also associated with learning disabilities. If someone is becoming drowsy, there are more delta and slower theta brainwaves creeping in, and if people are somewhat inattentive to external things and their minds are wandering, there is more theta present. If someone is exceptionally anxious and tense, an excessively high frequency of beta brainwaves may be present in different parts of the brain, but in other cases this may be associated with an excess of inefficient alpha activity in frontal areas that are associated with emotional control. Persons with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD, ADHD), head injuries, stroke, epilepsy, developmental disabilities, and often chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia tend to have excessive slow waves (usually theta and sometimes excess alpha) present. When an excessive amount of slow waves are present in the executive (frontal) parts of the brain, it becomes difficult to control attention, behavior, and/or emotions.
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