Is it called EEG biofeedback or neurofeedback?
Neurofeedback is used synonymously with EEG biofeedback; however, neurofeedback and neurotherapy are a broader terms. Neurofeedback refers to any type of brain biofeedback including: HEG (blood flow), fMRI and MEG (electromagnetic waves). EEG biofeedback refers just to brainwave biofeedback. EEG (electroencephalography) is the recording of brainwave activity.
It all begins with brainwaves. What are brainwaves?
Brainwaves are the sum total of millions of neurons all firing at once. The number of neurons sparking in the brain at a certain frequency (speed) convey information that defines the amplitude (or power). Brainwaves are measured in Hertz (waves per second), and have a spectrum of frequencies. Each frequency spectrum carries a different meaning about emotions, physical movement, concentration, and creative expression. Issues happen when specific frequencies do not fire optimally for a given activity. For example, it is not optimal for beta frequency, the “go” brainwave, to be dominant at night or it causes insomnia. By the same token, delta, the “sleep” brainwave causes daytime drowsiness and insomnia if is too active during the day.
Discover Your Potential
Neurofeedback is a scientifically proven way to improve the way you feel and function in the world by improving how your brain operates.
It is a noninvasive, organic process that does not change who you are. It’s still you. It is you just in a better mood or with an increase in confidence, focus and performance. Neurofeedback is an alternative to medication for most issues that stem from the brain. It is a journey into the possible. What is your potential?
Neurotherapy can be an effective standalone tool for many issues, such as TBI, sleep, PTSD, ADHD, headaches/migraines, Tourettes/Tics. Yet, for other issues like addictions, eating disorders, smoking cessation, abusive relationships, character disorders, and issues related to one’s discipline for or resistance to change, it is only a powerful adjunct to other effective healing modalities.
Many leading alcohol and substance abuse treatment centers now have services such as BrainPaint neurotherapy that can help underlying issues called comorbidities, and do not just focus solely on addiction recovery. Why? These underlying issues can become obstacles to addiction recovery. For example, it is very difficult for a client to sit through an individual, group or 12-step meeting if he or she has ADD, ADHD, anxiety or frequent panic attacks. Helping to heal these underlying issues frees the newly sober to be more present for the drug rehab program. This also applies to other addiction recovery programs other than drug dependence such as eating disorder treatment, gambling addiction, computer addiction, sex addiction, shopping addiction, compulsive behaviors, pain medication addiction and alcoholism.
There are three primary sources of anxiety that neurotherapy can address in different ways.
- The most common type is what we call reactionary anxiety. This type can not be traced back to birth. Its roots can be traced to dysfunctional family dynamics, abusive relationships, or extremely scary event(s). This type of anxiety is quite predictable. For instance, whenever certain events are discussed, or the person is reminded of something scary, anxiety is triggered. Phobias also fall into this category. BrainPaint’s alpha theta protocols usually addresses this type anxiety quickly and effectively.
- Another common type of anxiety is called generalized anxiety. Here, one’s brain is overly activated like they drank a gallon of coffee. It is our observation that most people who have this type of anxiety were born with it, yet it becomes more pronounced with the onset of hormonal changes during puberty. It also may manifest with the increased pressures of the work place or beginning a family. If this type of anxiety appears intensely before the age of 5, the child’s mind can not handle the reality of feeling so out-of-control. Their mind fabricates worries as the cause for this overwhelming emotion. It often increases and decreases without cause. When it’s at its worst lost keys will be experienced as dangerous. While at other times missing keys would just be distressing. A person with this type of anxiety usually has parents or grandparents who also suffered from it. They usually dislike caffeine or activities with a quite a bit of stimulation because their brains are already over stimulated. SMR neurotherapy training can slow their brains down this over activation which makes everyday stress much easier to manage.
- A third type of anxiety stems from one’s brain being too slowed down. We are not referring to being slowed down intellectually. These people often take on excessive responsibilities, risky behaviors, or chronic worrying as a way to artificially elevate their arousal levels. They’re often considered adrenalin junkies. When things slow down, they literally fall asleep. Beta biofeedback is always a significant part of their neurotherapy.
People seeking therapy just want to feel better. Fortunately there are brainwaves that are related to our feelings (both good and bad), our reactions to events and emotional traumas.
BrainPaint providers will ask you 90 questions, which were derived from a large, highly effective UCLA study. Your answers will generate protocol suggestions that prioritize the training of specific brainwaves related to better mood regulation.
The objective is to teach your brain to balance and not be reactive in response to events out of your control. It is a common human experience to feel happy if things go your way, and angry, frustrated or depressed if they don’t. BrainPaint assists you to live in a state of “What is” rather than should have, could have and would have. Instead of getting your way you perceive options that are better than your way. Instead of getting your way, you get what you want.
Bill Scott, co-founder of BrainPaint, who has been in the field of neurofeedback therapy for 19 years has observed that people with major depressive episodes so severe that they were hospitalized multiple times may develop PTSD from the depression. When these individuals experience a reminder related to the previous depressive events, their brain goes back into those old states and patterns. These are just flashbacks. This is why when they start feeling that darkness coming on, it quickly intensifies. For this population, after training their brain to increase its activation with beta for mood elevation, we follow up with alpha theta, a specific type of neurotherapy training, to address the trauma and to prevent these flashbacks.
Neurotherapy also improves:
- ADD & ADHD
- Addiction Recovery
- Autism & Aspergers
- Brain Injuries
- Chronic Pain
- Fears and Phobias
- Headaches & Migraines
- Peak Performance
- Stroke Recovery
Neurofeedback Therapy – What happens during a session?
SELECTING A TAILORED PROTOCOL JUST FOR YOU
In your first neurofeedback therapy session your practitioner will ask you 90 questions to
come up with an individualized protocol tailored for you. In subsequent sessions you will
be asked about six questions to fine tune your protocols and to track your progress.
PLACING THE SENSORS
Your provider will then put sensors on your ear and scalp. It doesn’t hurt and nothing
goes into your brain! The sensors only pick up the electrical activity coming from your
brainwaves. You may have 1-3 sensor placement changes throughout your sessions
for a total of 25-30 minutes of feedback.
NEUROFEEDBACK THERAPY SESSION WITH THE EYES CLOSED
Depending on your protocols you may either receive feedback with your eyes closed.
(auditory only) or with your eyes open (auditory and visual). When the eyes are closed,
alpha rises (since the brain is idle) allowing one to go into deeper states. Many people
find alpha theta very relaxing.
NEUROFEEDBACK THERAPY SESSIONS WITH THE EYES OPEN
With eyes open neurofeedback training you watch the fractals morphing on the
screen. You can also be mindful of the green and red graphs. BrainPaint will let
you know when you are “in the zone” – the perfect state of relaxed attentiveness
with your awareness in the present moment. Or, what we call “What is”. Every 2
minutes BrainPaint will give you additional feedback as well.
How many sessions will I need?
Generally people notice improvements within the first 5-8 sessions, but this does not mean that you are finished. To achieve your goals and for longer lasting results 20-30 sessions are recommended. Children under the age of puberty typically get faster results and need less sessions.
Does anything go into my Brain?
No, absolutely nothing goes into the brain. Sensors are put on the scalp to pick up electrical activity coming from your brain.