Sound healing and how the cat’s purr can help heal and relieve pain (science)

Sound healing and how the cat's purr can help heal and relieve pain
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Anecdotally we hear quite a lot about the healing powers of the cat’s purr. I decided to dig around a bit to see if I could find some scientific studies to back up the anecdotal evidence. Here are some examples of sound healing both involving the cat’s purr and other resources.

The dominant frequencies in a cat’s purr are 20-50 Hz.

Music: Music can be a source of healing using the process of “sound healing”. It uses different signals and vibrations to improve the physical and emotional health of individuals. Sound healing has been used from ancient times (‘Sound Healing’ – California State University).

Study: In 2003, scientists at Fauna Communications Institute of Hillsborough, North Carolina, USA, discovered that low decibel vibrations between 20 and 140 Hz (cycles per second) can help to heal bone fractures, relieve pain, reduce swollen soft tissue, and help repair torn muscles and ligaments. The cat’s purr runs at frequencies between 25 and 50 Hz which is near optimal frequencies for fracture healing and bone growth.

Big cats low frequency sounds: Not all cat species purr. For example, the big cats can’t purr because they can roar instead but they can produce low-level sounds that increase muscle strength, decrease pain and increase joint mobility.

Purring when not content: We know and it’s been confirmed by veterinarians that cats purr not only when content but sometimes when traumatised or severely injured and when, for example, at the veterinarian’s clinic about to be euthanised. And they purr when giving birth. The times when cats purr indicates that the sound has a multi-purpose function both to signal a desire for friendship but also to help heal anatomically the cat’s body.

A study published in 2001: “The felid purr: A healing mechanism?” states that domestic cats, servals, ocelots and pumas produce fundamental, dominant or strong frequencies at exactly 25 Hz and 50 Hz which are the two low frequencies that best promote bone growth and heal fractures. These four species of cat “have a strong harmonic exactly at, or within 2 Hz of 100 Hz, a frequency used therapeutically for pain, oedema, wounds and dyspnea.” And: “An internal healing mechanism would be advantageous, increasing recovery time and keeping muscles and bone strong when sedentary.”

Another study published online: “Vibrational frequencies that heal”, states in the preview that, “Scientist at North Carolina’s Fauna Communications Research Institute have found that the vibrations of feline purring strengthens and heals the animals’ bones and organs”. This is a reference to the 2003 study I mention above.

College of Sound Healing: The healing powers of the cat’s purr or other low frequency sounds produced by the big cats for example shouldn’t surprise us because the human voice can be used to “tune up our body and lift our spirits”. The words come from Simon Heather, the founder of the College of Sound Healing. He states that “particular sounds have different effects on the body.”

He states that “making laughing sounds all relaxes the diaphragm and induces the release of natural painkillers into the bloodstream, these sounds also boost the immune system.”

The power of the cat’s purr is quite extensive not only in healing parts of the anatomy but also promoting contentment in their owner!

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