The brain has millions and millions of tiny neurons that send electrical signals to each other. Just as drops of water in the ocean combine to form ocean waves, the electrical signals in the brain, when viewed at a larger scale, form electrical waves or patterns.
We can view these electrical brain waves in a process called brain mapping. Small electrodes placed on the scalp observe the brain waves. A computer analyzes and displays this data as pictures.
Observing these pictures shows how the brain is working and can identify areas of the brain that are not working as well as they could. Medical practitioners have long used these methods to diagnose brain injuries.
Like ocean waves, brain waves can be tall or short, fast or slow. The particular shapes and speed of brain waves in different parts of the brain identify areas that can be trained to perform better. For example, slow waves might indicate learning disabilities. Fast waves can be related to alertness and ability to learn; however, they can also indicate anxiety and other similar conditions.
Neurofeedback is a method to not only better understand brain functions but to teach the brain to improve itself. More than 30 years of research in university labs has shown that training the brain with neurofeedback has an 85% success rate in improving learning ability, behavior and other brain-related abilities.
Drugs and chemicals have proven successful in forcing changes in brain wave patterns and thereby improving behavior and other brain-related abilities. However, they have the disadvantage of sometimes causing undesirable side effects and of requiring life-long treatment. Neurofeedback provides a non-drug way of accomplishing the same goals, using the ability of the brain to teach itself.
With neurofeedback, you can go to a training center to exercise and build the brain, like exercising and building muscles at a gym. As one builds “brain muscle” and “brain power,” tasks are less fearful and easier to do, and confidence and self-esteem improve. Like learning to ride a bike, the training is easy to do and lasts a lifetime. Neurofeedback allows people to use their brains and live the way they want.
As computer games are played on a screen in a neurofeedback session, rewards train the brain how to work better. The brain then learns the right way to work and becomes balanced into correct patterns, or even improved with advanced brain skills and abilities. In turn, the person’s overall behavior is improved. Life becomes easier with fewer difficulties as the brain takes over and runs improved patterns on automatic pilot.
Neurofeedback can be used in place of medications, or concurrently with them. Experience shows that a child or adult can be weaned off of medication, or have the dosage greatly reduced, as neurofeedback takes effect. Whenever medications are not working, or when they have bad side effects, neurofeedback can take over and make positive changes in the brain to improve behavior and create success.
Neurofeedback is as safe as playing a computer game, as it has no negative physical side effects. In addition to improving particular problems, there are beneficial side effects that carry into school and family situations. These include improved cooperation, better social skills, and incredible improvement in academic areas, including reading and math. IQ typically increases as brain problems disappear.
If you or your loved one is having difficulties with learning or behavior, or is struggling emotionally, a brain map evaluation can determine how best to retrain the brain to enhance learning, improve behavior and balance the emotions through neurofeedback. When you know the behaviors that can be corrected by re-training the brain, you can make better decisions about treatment.
The problems addressed with neurofeedback brain re-training include many areas such as:
While parents may plan for their child’s college education, this education may never happen if there is not academic success now. And getting that great job in the future will not happen unless brain is improved and changes are made now to prepare for success in the future.
- Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder
- Oppositional Defiant Disorder
- Conduct Disorder
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Alcohol and Drug Addictions
- Sleep Disorders
- Learning Disabilities
- Brain Injury
An investment in neurofeedback now is an investment in present and future success. Drugs are short-acting, they cost more over time, and they have multiple side effects. There are no physical side effects with neurofeedback, and you can expect the changes to be ongoing and lasting.
A comprehensive program will include a medical evaluation, psychological assessment and testing, brain mapping and neurofeedback. As the brain learns the right way to function and becomes balanced into correct patterns, there will be many positive changes occurring in a person’s life. Psychotherapy may be beneficial for the family, as the family adjusts to a newer more positive way of life, such as the child moving from old patterns of contention into newer more positive patterns of fitting into the family. Tutoring may also be advised. For as the neurofeedback process improves neurological functioning, a child may have a deficit of basic knowledge that was missed during normal school activity, due to the past problems of the brain in not being able to appropriately absorb the academic material that was presented. As brain function improves, the child/adult is now able to take in information that it could not do before neurofeedback training.
Individuals who desire to increase their mental performance and creative skills, such as executives, professional people, artists, dancers, athletes including golfers, may benefit from Performance Enhancement Training by highly skilled neurofeedback clinicians.
From children to senior citizens, neurofeedback works to reduce slow wave thinking and increase faster better recall in the form of “Brain Brightening” that increases the ability to think more clearly. Whether young or old, neurofeedback is a boon for better mental clarity.
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