Vibroacoustic Sensory Immersion Table – VSI-Table

This experience engages all five senses to ground the individual in the present moment in order to build resiliency in the nervous system, and thus improving the individual’s ability to regulate stress and mood symptoms more effectively throughout the day. Our senses - sight, hearing, taste, touch, and smell - are the point of contact between our internal-self and the external world, which constantly influences our internal operations and informs our mind and body how to shift and adapt to the external stimuli we experience. Utilizing various sensory engagements at the same time maximize the potential of various somatic based interventions in the least amount of time. This VSI-Table allows the individual to utilize any combination of the sensory interventions outlined below from one intervention to all of them, either simultaneously or in succession. Below is a brief outline of each available intervention that can be provided and a brief description of the identified benefits. A reference list is included below with clinical research to support all claims.

 

Sight

  • White light therapy device projects 10,000 lumens onto the face and upper body to enhance energy and mood, stimulating the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) within the hypothalamus through the retinas, which is associated with the body’s biological clock. This has been shown to improve mood and may assist with improved sleep patterns

  • For meditation session: Virtual reality glasses are optional for sight immersion and provide 3D environments that range from a calm, natural setting (like a forest) to a colorful and energy filled room for exploration of the chakras

    • Light therapy device may still be used but effects are limited due to blocked access to the retinas

 

Hearing

  • Noise cancelling headphones are used to eliminate all outside noises. Binaural frequencies are then played to reset brainwaves and encourage specific chemical reactions for positive changes in mood

  • For meditation session: Guided meditation, guided visualization, white noise, or other sounds can be provided. The user may also opt for noise cancelling only to focus on internal sounds or silence

 

Touch

  • Four 50W transducers driven by a 200W, 4 channel amp deliver powerful vibrations that are set to specific frequencies to penetrate the entire body from head to toe

  • Transducers can target ultra-low frequencies from 15Hz – 125Hz to stimulate regulation of the nervous system and influence internal frequency, or be set to target one or more specific chakra frequencies

  • A weighted heating blanket is available to add layer of warmth above the body to encourage relaxation of the muscles and add a comforting sensation from the weight of the blanket (15lbs.)

 

Taste

  • Client receives 2-3 drops of highly concentrated nervine mixture that includes natural nervine herbs (mixture dependent on allergies) to improve nervous system functioning and health long term

  • Client may also opt for continued supplementation plan based on their immediate concerns or needs, which may include sleep, memory, focus, attention, headaches, etc. An individualized supplement plan is available at the completion of the user’s session

  • A cleansing tea is can be provided after completion of session to hydrate the body and flush any toxins that may be released due to vibrations and various stimulation to the muscle and nervous systems

 

Smell

  • Lavender and/or Chamomile may be diffused using small diffuser unit placed near where user’s head is laying to stimulate calm and relaxation response

    • User may opt for organic essential oils to be applied around neck and face to enhance diffusion, or in place of diffusion

    • If user focus is on promoting energy, then calming oils can be replaced with citrus based essential oils to stimulate rather than calm

  • For meditation session: Frankincense is recommended, or a Calm Blend

 

BONUS: Direct Internal Stimulation

  • This intervention is available upon request. Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) device is a non-invasive, drug-free method shown to be effective in pain relief as well as nerve stimulation. The TENS unit is available to attach to specific parts of the ear on the individual using clips to provide stimulation directly to the Vagus nerve. The Vagus nerve is responsible for regulating heart rate, breathing, digestion, and other important functions that require a healthy nervous system. This is a small electrical current that can be adjusted precisely from a “tickle” to a barely noticeable sensation; the method is not painful to any degree when utilized correctly

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REFERENCES

 

White Light Therapy

Shown to assist in decreasing mood symptoms in difficult to treat patients diagnosed with forms of depression.

Camardese, G., Leone, B., Serrani, R., Walstra, C., Nicola, M. D., Giacomo, D. M., Bria, P., & Janiri, L. (2015). Augmentation of light therapy in difficult-to-treat depressed patients: an open-label trial in both unipolar and bipolar patients. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 11, 2331-2338. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.2147/NDT.S74861

 

Bright light therapy administered in the mornings and afternoons showed a significant decrease in depression symptoms in those diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Possibly due to positively impacting the individual’s biological clock.

 

Larkin, M. (1998). Benefits of phototherapy in SAD illuminated. The Lancet, 352(9136), 1289. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1016/S0140-6736(05)70502-X

 

Light therapy showed clinical significance in improving sleep hygiene in one study focused on older adults managing dementia.

 

Chong, M. S., Tan, K. T., Tay, L., Wong, Y. M., & Ancoli-Israel, S. (2013). Bright light therapy as part of a multicomponent management program improves sleep and functional outcomes in delirious older hospitalized adults. Clinical interventions in aging, 8, 565–572. https://doi.org/10.2147/CIA.S44926

 

In a population managing dementia, bright light therapy was shown to improve sleep patterns and limited evidence showed a decrease in agitation.

 

Burns, A., Allen, H., Tomenson, B., Duignan, D., & Byrne, J. (2009). Bright light therapy for agitation in dementia: a randomized controlled trial. International psychogeriatrics, 21(4), 711–721. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1041610209008886

 

Binaural frequencies

Listening to binaural frequencies as opposed to non-binaural has been shown to result in greater self-reported relaxation, as well as increased parasympathetic activation (rest and digest response) and sympathetic withdrawal, which is the “fight or flight” response.

 

McConnell, P. A., Froeliger, B., Garland, E. L., Ives, J. C., & Sforzo, G. A. (2014). Auditory driving of the autonomic nervous system: Listening to theta-frequency binaural beats post-exercise increases parasympathetic activation and sympathetic withdrawal. Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 1248-1248. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01248

 

Binaural auditory beats using the Beta frequency bands (20Hz) has been shown to improve long-term memory recall.

 

Garcia-Argibay, M., Santed, M. A., & Reales, J. M. (2019). Binaural auditory beats affect long-term memory. Psychological Research, 83(6), 1124-1136. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1007/s00426-017-0959-2

 

Guided Meditation

Total mood disturbances were found to be significantly reduced after meditation in one study that looked specifically at healthcare professionals.

 

Valluvan, R., Thampi, S. A., Mueller, A., Chang Tracy, ,F.H., Senthilkumar, S., & Balachundhar, S. (2019). The effect of a one-time 15-minute guided meditation (Isha Kriya) on stress and mood disturbances among operating room professionals: a prospective interventional pilot study. F1000Research, 8. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.12688/f1000research.18446.1

 

One study found that a group of students showed a significant increase in mindfulness, mindful consumption and life satisfaction when reporting higher frequency of meditation, and those who participated in guided meditation showed a significant increase in these areas over a control group.

 

Gupta, S., & Verma, H. V. (2020). Mindfulness, mindful consumption, and life satisfaction: An experiment with higher education students. Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, 12(3), 456-474. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1108/JARHE-11-2018-0235

 

Using a guided meditation application showed an increase in positive emotional state both long-term and immediately after guided meditation.

 

Athanas, A. J., McCorrison, J. M., Smalley, S., Price, J., Grady, J., Campistron, J., & Schork, N. J. (2019). Association Between Improvement in Baseline Mood and Long-Term Use of a Mindfulness and Meditation App: Observational Study. JMIR Mental Health, 6(5). http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.2196/12617

 

Vibroacoustic Stimulation

 

Using a vibroacoustic sound bed has been shown to improve momentary well-being and caused self-perceived physiological changes associated with relaxation beyond the benefits of simply resting.

 

Bieligmeyer, S., Helmert, E., Hautzinger, M., & Vagedes, J. (2018). Feeling the sound – short-term effect of a vibroacoustic music intervention on well-being and subjectively assessed warmth distribution in cancer patients—A randomized controlled trial. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 40, 171-178. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1016/j.ctim.2018.03.002

 

A review of available research in 2019 showed a significant improvement of motor function in both children and adults with cerebral palsy when utilizing mechanical vibrations (vibroacoustic).

 

Kantor, J., Kantorová, L., Marečková, J., Peng, D., & Vilímek, Z. (2019). Potential of Vibroacoustic Therapy in Persons with Cerebral Palsy: An Advanced Narrative Review. International journal of environmental research and public health, 16(20), 3940. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16203940

 

Vibroacoustic and sound therapies have indicated improvements in behavioral, cognitive, and psychological changes in patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

 

Gallego, M.G. & Garcia, J. G. (2017). Music therapy and Alzheimer's disease: Cognitive, psychological, and behavioural effects. Neurologia,(Eng-lish Edition) 32(5), 300-308.

 

Using low frequency sound wave stimulation (vibroacoustic) therapy through both hands and feet was effective in alleviating pain and improving functional ability in patients with chronic back pain in one study.

 

Lim, E., Lim, R., Suhaimi, A., Chan, B. T., & Wahab, A. K. A. (2018). Treatment of chronic back pain using indirect vibroacoustic therapy: A pilot study. Journal of Back and Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation, 31(6), 1041-1047. https://doi.org/10.3233/BMR-171042

 

One study found “High Amplitude Low Frequency–Music Impulse Stimulation treatment seems to give beneficial effect as an add‐on treatment for depression”.

 

Gudrun Agusta Sigurdardóttir, Nielsen, P. M., Rønager, J., & Wang, A. G. (2019). A pilot study on high amplitude low frequency–music impulse stimulation as an add‐on treatment for depression. Brain and Behavior, 9(10) http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1002/brb3.1399

 

A recent study showed that vibroacoustic therapy, especially when coupled with sound therapy, can improve sleep hygiene in individuals struggling with insomnia

 

Roy, S. (2020). Vibroacoustic Therapy Shows Brain and Sleep Quality Benefits in Clinical Trial for Insomnia. Anthem Media Group.

 

Another study found that “vibroacoustic stimulation alters the brain’s functional connectivity as well as improves sleep in patients with insomnia”.

 

Zabrecky, G., Shahrampour, S., Whitely, C., Alizadeh, M., Conklin, C., Wintering, N., Doghramji, K., Zhan, T., Mohamed, F., Newberg, A., & Monti, D. (2020). An fMRI Study of the Effects of Vibroacoustic Stimulation on Functional Connectivity in Patients with Insomnia. Sleep Disorders, 2020, 9. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1155/2020/7846914

 

Vibroacoustic therapy was found to be beneficial for pain and mood relief, and while using identified self-care interventions may prolong positive outcomes, self-care routines were found weaker relative to vibroacoustic therapy.

 

Campbell, E. A., Hynynen, J., Burger, B., & Ala-Ruona, E. (2019). Exploring the use of vibroacoustic treatment for managing chronic pain and comorbid mood disorders: A mixed methods study. Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, 28(4), 291-314. https://doi.org/10.1080/08098131.2019.1604565

 

Natural Supplementation

Chamomile

 

Shown in many studies to decrease symptoms of anxiety, one reason being it contains the compound apigenin which has similar effects as benzodiazepines; a common anti-anxiety medication

 

Karetnick, J., & Cassetty, S. (2020). 4 health benefits of drinking chamomile tea, including better sleep and anxiety relief. US edition

 

Shown to improve sleep quality, especially among older adults

 

Adib-Hajbaghery, M., & Seyedeh, N. M. (2017). The effects of chamomile extract on sleep quality among elderly people: A clinical trial. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 35, 109-114. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1016/j.ctim.2017.09.010

 

Valerian Root

One of the most studied plant extracts with evidence of supporting better sleep quality due to anxiolytic effects. Research is mixed and more needs to be known to further this finding.

 

Guadagna, S., Barattini, D. F., Rosu, S., & Ferini-Strambi, L. (2020). Plant Extracts for Sleep Disturbances: A Systematic Review. Evidence - Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2020, 9. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1155/2020/3792390

 

Passion Flower

 

Shown to help reduce symptoms or triggers of anxiety, especially in relationship to public speaking.

 

Avelino da Silva, J., De Carvalho da Costa, Maria José, Rodrigues da Alves, Maria da Conceição, Fernandes da Braga, João Euclides, Bezerra Luna da Lima, Caliandra Maria, & De Morais da Pordeus, Liana Clébia. (2017). Effects of the single supplementation and multiple doses of passiflora incarnata L. on human anxiety: A clinical trial, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized. International Archives of Medicine, 10. https://doi.org/10.3823/2276

 

Shown to increase benefits of Setraline (common medication for anxiety) when used in conjunction.

 

Nojoumi, M., Ghaeli, P., Salimi, S., Sharifi, A., & Raisi, F. (2016). Effects of Passion Flower Extract, as an Add-On Treatment to Sertraline, on Reaction Time in Patients ‎with Generalized Anxiety Disorder: A Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study. Iranian journal of psychiatry, 11(3), 191–197.

 

Lavender

 

It has been shown that multisensory stimulation intervention and aromatherapy can be useful for improving anxiety and depression, and this was shown to be particularly significant in managing depression.

 

Ilali, E., Taraghi, Z., Jafari-Koulaee, A., Elyasi, F., & Moosazadeh, M. (2021). Comparison of the effect of multisensory stimulation intervention and aromatherapy inhalation with lavender essence on anxiety and depression in the older adults undergoing hemodialysis. Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Sciences, 8(3), 155-162.

 

It was shown that women experiencing post-partum depression symptoms saw a decrease in depression symptoms when using lavender oil distilled nightly.

 

The Effects of Inhalation Lavender Aromatherapy on Postmenopausal Women’s Depression and Anxiety: A Randomized Clinical Trial. (2020). The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, 16(8), 617-622. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1016/j.nurpra.2020.04.027

 

Lavender diffusion can help to decrease depression and anxiety symptoms in response to medical conditions.

 

Aenturk, A., & Tekinsoy KartA[+ or -]n, PA[+ or -]nar. (2018). The effect of lavender oil application via inhalation pathway on hemodialysis patientsʼ anxiety level and sleep quality. Holistic Nursing Practice, 32(6), 324-335. https://doi.org/10.1097/HNP.0000000000000292

 

Lavender herbal tea has been shown to help decrease symptoms of anxiety and depression

 

Mohammad-Rafi Bazrafshan, Jokar, M., Shokrpour, N., & Delam, H. (2020). The effect of lavender herbal tea on the anxiety and depression of the elderly: A randomized clinical trial. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 50. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1016/j.ctim.2020.102393

 

Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS)

 

Vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) has been shown to decrease inflammation in the autonomic nervous system which is linked to depression

 

Neural networks and the anti-inflammatory effect of transcutaneous auricular vagus nerve stimulation in depression. (2020). Journal of Neuroinflammation, 17, 1. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1186/s12974-020-01732-5

 

Shown to help acutely treat persistent migraines

 

Martelletti, P., Barbanti, P., Grazzi, L., Pierangeli, G., Rainero, I., Geppetti, P., Ambrosini, A., Sarchielli, P., Tassorelli, C., Liebler, E., de Tommaso, M., PRESTO Study Group, & on Behalf of the PRESTO Study Group. (2018). Consistent effects of non-invasive vagus nerve stimulation (nVNS) for the acute treatment of migraine: Additional findings from the randomized, sham-controlled, double-blind PRESTO trial. Journal of Headache and Pain, 19(1), 1-8. https://doi.org/10.1186/s10194-018-0929-0

 

Shown to help alleviate symptoms of major depressive disorder in clinical trials

 

Sackeim, H. A., Rush, A. J., George, M. S., Marangell, L. B., Husain, M. M., Nahas, Z., Johnson, C. R., Seidman, S., Giller, C., Haines, S., Simpson, R. K., & Goodman, R. R. (2001). Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS(TM)) for Treatment-Resistant Depression: Efficacy, Side Effects, and Predictors of Outcome. Neuropsychopharmacology, 25(5), 713-28. http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1016/S0893-133X(01)00271-8

 

Tu, Y., Fang, J., Cao, J., Wang, Z., Park, J., Jorgenson, K., Lang, C., Liu, J., Zhang, G., Zhao, Y., Zhu, B., Rong, P., & Kong, J. (2018). A distinct biomarker of continuous transcutaneous vagus nerve stimulation treatment in major depressive disorder. Brain Stimulation, 11(3), 501-508. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.brs.2018.01.006

 

Wu, C., Liu, P., Fu, H., Chen, W., Cui, S., Lu, L., & Tang, C. (2018). Transcutaneous auricular vagus nerve stimulation in treating major depressive disorder: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Medicine (Baltimore), 97(52), e13845-e13845. https://doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000013845