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Deborah A. Stokes, PhD, BCIA-EEG
Improve Your Stress Resilience With Neurofeedback
The Better Brain Center

Improve Your Stress Resilience With Neurofeedback

Also known as EEG biofeedback, neurofeedback is a non-drug alternative for conditions such as migraine, ADHD, depression, anxiety, brain injury and overall stress management. Many people respond to stress through overeating. Neurofeedback can help people control their stress-related behaviors.
Neurofeedback is a painless method that helps train your brain to relax and/or focus so that stress and pain are better managed, performance is improved at school, in sports or in the performing arts. For example, members of the Italian soccer team who won the 2006 World Cup were undergoing neurofeedback sessions prior to their win.
Neurofeedback has been around for over 30 years, although it has gained attention mostly in the past few years. It has been used for a variety of conditions which appear to be associated with irregular brain activity including attention deficit disorder with and without hyperactivity and specific learning disabilities.
Sensors are attached to the scalp, which feed brainwaves into an electroencephalogram (EEG) machine that is linked to a computer. The brainwaves are converted to audio and video displays, which resemble video games. Individuals with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), for example, often have a higher percentage of slow brainwaves compared to non-ADHD individuals.
A study published in Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America (2005), indicated that EEG biofeedback should be considered “probably efficacious” for the treatment of attention deficit disorder and that “research findings published to date indicate positive clinical response in approximately 75% of patients treated in controlled group studies.”
Watching the screen and listening to tones gives the client immediate feedback on whether his/her brain is making faster or slower brainwaves. By practicing the making of brainwaves that are normally present when they are calm and focused, clients learn over time to maintain the desired state.
There are neurofeedback protocols for a variety of conditions and success treating the following
Stress-Related Disorders irritable bowel, headaches, hypertension, compulsive behavior.
Attentional Disorders inattentive, hyperactive and/or impulsive types, and lack of motivation or initiative.
Anxiety Disorders generalized anxiety, panic disorder, phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder, agoraphobia.
Mood Disorders major depression, anger and rage disorders, low motivation.
Pain Disorders migraines (see the ABC news special about success with migraines), tension headaches, fibromyalgia.
Miscellaneous bedwetting, bruxism, tics, Tourette's, head injury, chronic fatigue syndrome, brain fog.
What if I am on Medications?
You should also be aware of the relationship between neurofeedback and medications. Obviously, many people undergo neurofeedback with the goal of reducing or eliminating the need for medications. However, do not alter your medications without consulting your physician.
Neurofeedback should only be provided by those licensed for independent practice in a mental health field (LPC, LCSW, or PhD in psychology) or medical doctor (MD).
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