Together with the Neurologist, Professor Dr. med Yong-Seun Chang-Gusko, Professor of Health and Social Management at the FOM School of Economics & Management in Hamburg, Germany, we conducted a study to measure the efficacy of the e-Health app SonicTonic on a group of students. The questionnaire was developed by the SonicTonic team and consisted of a pre and post test to collect personal and app-based data. The users received a coupon code, which allowed free access to the app, and they were encouraged to use the appropriate sound programmes when they wanted to sleep or relax. The duration of the study was 1 month.
- Number of participants: 16
- Gender: Predominantly female
- Age: 21 – 25 years old
- Interests: music, lifestyle, medicine
- Main problems: sleep disorders and stress
The test group proved to be balanced and felt confident about using technical equipment. Additionally, they were interested in the possible influence of sound on body and mind. The collected data from both before and after the test was compiled into an efficacy trial for SonicTonic. Our hypothesis was that the application would alleviate sleep problems, reduce stress and generally improve the user’s quality of life.
The results of this study are presented on the basis of a persona profile:
Julia Meier, female student, 22 years old from Hamburg, had not previously used a sound or music therapy app before SonicTonic. After using the app once or twice a week, she reported an improvement in sleep and relaxation. She was enthusiastic about the simple and practical handling of the app, and found the SonicTonic website informative. She particularly found the Knowledge Pyramid interesting and helpful.
Overall, the hypothesis of the effectiveness of SonicTonic as an e-health application can be positively confirmed. The generated profile, which accounts for approximately 60% of the entire test group, not only shows the high significance of the correlation between sound and sleep, but also the increasing role of e-health in our healthcare system. Comments indicated both psychological and neurological effects.
The physiological response is seen as a memory-based reaction to a piece of music or a music style that triggers an existing association to a place, thought or experience.
A neurological response is one that is triggered by the properties of a sound itself and not any pre–existing associations. Examples of this are the Brainwave Entrainment techniques used in SonicTonic, such as Binaural Beats or Brain Hemisphere Stimulation.
SonicTonic is not considered to be just a sleep app, but more an auditory mental hygiene tool for promoting a more effective life. The study used only Tonics to reduce stress and promote sleep and did not include Tonics for stimulating learning and increasing productivity and focus. This area will be studied at a later date.
Using sound and music to intentionally bring positive change may not be a new territory at first glance, but the concept of mixing together a number of existing techniques was considered to be somewhat of an innovation. The student’s data suggested that, by integrating Receptive Sound Therapy into their everyday life, the users are capable of improving social practices, such as work and sleep routine or dealing with anxiety and stress in general – and this as little as just a couple sessions weekly. The convenience of SonicTonic being a mobile application and the short session duration of only 10 minutes allowed the students a seamless integration into their routines – highly recommending the easy-to-use attitude. Especially interesting is the finding that the different auditory techniques (ingredients) have been considered to be “effective”.
Further research on the combination of these techniques is recommended to conclude possible psychological and physical reaction on different age groups and social sectors.