What Is Neurofeedback?
Neurofeedback, also known as EEG (electroencephalogram) biofeedback, is a non invasive, non medication, therapeutic intervention that provides immediate feedback from assessments and a computer-based program that assesses a client’s brainwave activity. Brainwaves are the electrical impulses produced as your brain cells communicate with one another. Brainwaves tell us alot about how we feel and function; our thought habits, stress levels, underlying mood and overall brain function.
Using sensors on the scalp, we can measure and monitor this activity. With brain analysis software, a Q EEG brain map, can identify what the specific activity is and the area of the brain that is showing the most rise in symptoms or dysregulated brain waves.
Once we know the areas of concern via the brain map and assessments, we can create a training plan to help regulate your brain into a more efficient and regulated state.
Children, adolescents, and adults with seizure conditions, behavior disorders, attention deficits, autism/asperger, ongoing developmental delays, acquired brain injuries, birth trauma, anxiety, depression, migraines, post-traumatic stress disorder, stress-related problems, and insomnia or interrupted sleep patterns, as well as those with age-related cognitive loss, may find neurofeedback a viable intervention.
What Can I Expect?
Neurofeedback therapy typically consists of up to three times a week sessions for an average of 10 weeks. Some people need fewer sessions, while others require more. While you are sitting in a chair, the therapist will attach sensors to your scalp. A computer EEG program will process your brain waves and provide information about various brainwave frequencies. While watching a video chosen, your brain and central nervous system receive feedback signals from the program. The program will then begin directing your brainwave activity toward more desirable and controlled patterns. The sounds and images tell you immediately when your brain approaches a more efficient place and when not. When the movie/video plays with a brighter screen, it is because your brain is approaching reorganization of the brain waves to a more desired state. When the movie/video is dark, it is because your brain is showing there are some dysregulated brain waves that are still in need of training. Between sessions, you should be able to notice changes in focus, stress, sleep patterns, or mental clarity.
How Does It Work?
Neurofeedback is not considered a cure, but rather a method of managing or regulating the workings of the brain so it functions in a healthier manner. This is achieved by repeated training sessions, while teaching your central nervous system to reorganize and regulate brainwave frequencies. Neurofeedback assesses your brain and provides information about areas of dysfunction that are causing symptoms so that they can be treated directly. Much like physical exercises develop specific muscles, the more your brain is exercised into reaching a more comfortable, more efficient position, the better it gets at it. As with learning any new skill, it simply requires time and repetition.
Over time, the brain learns how to produce these healthier brainwave patterns on its own. Negative symptoms decrease, mood improves and clients experience long-term positive changes.
Dr. Vista Parisoe-McSkulin has over 20 years of experience in the mental health field and over 12 with Bio/Neurofeedback. She has seen many clients ages 5-65 retrain dysregulated brain waves and increase positive changes not only neurologically but in their day to day lives. She couples it with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy. It’s been said “Neurofeedback aids in healing of the Brain while Therapy aids in healing of the Soul”.