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Frequently Asked Questions on Neurofeedback and Biofeedback

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  Q: What is Biofeedback?
A: A gentle, non-intrusive method using electronic devices to monitor and to present biological information back to an individual, who can then learn to control the process being monitored.  This self-regulating procedure provides immediate information about your body/mind system, allowing your brain and body to readjust and create a new balance.

Q: What is Neurofeedback? Brain Functional Areas
A: Neurofeedback is a specific type of biofeedback procedure directed toward the renormalization of the brain and central nervous system.  It utilizes the very tiny EEG (electroencephalogram) signals obtained from sensors on the scalp, to monitor the brainwaves and provide a corresponding signal (feedback) to the brain.  In short, Neurofeedback is brainwave training, a tool for the brain to directly learn flexibility, mental control and increased stability.  

Well-described patterns of optimal brain function are cultivated over sessions, accompanied by diminution or elimination of pathologic conditions as the brain orchestrates its own improvements.  Results are at least long-lasting, often permanent, and typically continue to advance following training.

Common applications of Neurofeedback include addressing learning disabilities, particularly those involving, or related to, ADD or ADHD.  Such individuals frequently show a "slowing" pattern in their EEG (Electroencephalogram), so-called because of either the pronounced level, or "surging", of Delta and/or Theta (slower, or lower frequency) waves.  Training to ameliorate these signature patterns over several sessions has been shown to increase the trainee's ability to attend and focus.  Such patterns are frequently experienced following brain injury or insult, and in these cases often respond quickly to neurofeedback.

Q: What is Neuro-Gen High-Performance Neurofeedback?
A: Neuro-Gen HPN, High-Performance Neurofeedback, is a specific type of next-generation neurofeedback.  It is designed to significantly accelerate the training process while minimizing the likelihood of reactivity.

Neuro-Gen HPN provides feedback to the brain in the form of a specific set of ultra low power signals.  Although the feedback signal is weak, it results in a measurable change in the brainwaves, all without conscious effort from the individual receiving the feedback.  This aspect is especially welcome with young children, or those unable to fully consciously cooperate.

During the session, the trainee sits in a comfortable chair, typically for about 45 minutes or so.  The Neuro-Gen Practitioner places EEG (electroencephalograph) leads at different sites on the trainee’s head.  A computer that is connected to the EEG amplifier analyzes the brainwave signal and in turn signals the EEG amplifier to produce feedback that precisely tracks, but is a bit different from, the brain’s own signal at that point in time. Specific filters are in place to allow training "under task", allowing the trainee to read, perform math problems, or watch a video, as may be appropriate, to further enhance the effects of training.

The Neuro-Gen HPN procedure is completely painless and results are often noticed immediately.

The result of this training is a changed brainwave state and greater ability for the brain to regulate itself for higher, more flexible functioning.

Q: What is CNS dysregulation? 

A: CNS dysregulation is a condition that may underlie the following:

  • Difficulty in concentration
  • Mood swings that seem hard to control
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Low mental and emotional energy
  • Memory problems
  • Difficulty with organization
  • Problems beginning and ending projects.
  • Major Depression
  • Anxiety or Panic Attacks
  • Tics
  • Mental fogginess or lack of clarity
  • Inability to stay on track (maintain desired focus)

If a person experiences three or more of the above, there is a likelihood that CNS dysregulation is present, and that one would benefit from Neurofeedback.

Q: How many Neuro-Gen HPN training sessions does it take?
A:  As you might expect, this depends on the individual, the issue being addressed, and often the length of time the issue has been in place.  I typically tell clients to expect about 20-30 training sessions.  Some trainees may be complete in 6 or even fewer sessions (more typical of certain mild traumatic brain injury), while others may require 30 or more sessions.

The brain may be mapped initially, and possibly at intervals throughout the training.  If performed, the brain map shows a 2D color image of the brain that typically reflects the training progres.

Issues that are similar to those one's parents or even grandparents had, may take longer.  Serious disorders such as Cerebral Palsy, Stroke, and Paralysis, may require many sessions, but, over time, there is usually a steady gradient of improvement, rather than decline.

Q: Are there any dangers?
A:  Neuro-Gen HPN has never been known to cause any new problems.  However, like homeopathy, and other subtle and energy-based healing methods, it may occasionally cause a temporary intensification of symptoms that have been experienced in the past, as part of the process of the condition being resolved.  Clients participate in this process by letting their practitioner know at each visit how they have fared in the 24 hours or so following the last training session.  Protocols can be selected to tailor the feedback to each individual at each point in their recovery.

Q: What else can Neuro-Gen HPN  help?
A:  The following is a short list: 

  • ADD/ADHD/Conduct issues
  • Addictions/Addictive behavior
  • Anger and Rage
  • Anxiety/Panic Attacks
  • Autism
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Depression
  • Epilepsy/Seizures
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches (Migraine, Cluster and Tension)
  • Head Injury Symptoms (like fogginess and confusion)
  • Insomnia and poor sleep
  • Peak Performance (Sports & Corporate)
  • PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)
  • Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
  • Tics / Involuntary muscle movement

 Q: What are some of the potential benefits of Neuro-Gen HPN training?

  • Optimize cognitive performance and motor skills
  • Enhance attention span and focus
  • Diminish hyperactivity
  • Normalize sleep
  • Decrease anxiety and depression
  • Reduce irritability and mood swings
  • Encourage friendships and socializing

Q: What happens if Neuro-Gen HPN clients are taking medications?

A:  With successful neurofeedback training, medications targeting brain function may no longer be needed or they may be needed at lower dosages as the brain takes over the role of regulating itself.  Although neurofeedback typically takes longer to produce change than many medications do, it appears to yield long-term benefits in all key areas of attention span, impulse control, academic achievement and social adjustment without  the physiological side effects often associated with medication.  Those on medication should be closely monitored by their physician, as dosage changes may be (and typically are) indicated.  Although certain specific medications may slow down the training effects of neurofeedback, it is not necessary (and typically not desirable) to discontinue existing medications in order to do neurofeedback.

Q: What are the research results?

A:  80% of adults who received neurofeedback as children for ADD showed continued positive focus results in a three, five and ten year follow-up study.  Decreases in impulsivity, distractibility and hyperactivity and increase in IQ have been documented in over 50 studies.  As neurofeedback dramatically shifts the brain's arousal level, modifying the usual response to fear, many otherwise intractable, brain-based emotional problems decrease.  See the comprehensive neurofeedback study bibliography prepared by D. Corydon Hammond, PhD, Professor, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, University of Utah School of Medicine.  It is organized by areas of interest.

Q: How do I find out more?
A:  You have many options:

  • Call or email us for any specific information or questions you may have related to Neurofeedback, NLP or Photonic Stimulation (NanoBeam 940 Infrared training).
  • Attend a presentation or an introductory lecture on personal development.
  • Make an appointment for a complimentary twenty-minute in-person or telephone interview with one of our staff, to see if our services might be helpful for you. (See Contact Us)
  • Set up a two-three hour initial session and Brain Map. This meeting includes a more detailed inquiry into whatever issues you are experiencing, and how our approaches might address and ameliorate them.  You can ask any questions you wish during this interview, and obtain detailed information on how neurofeedback works, and an estimate of its likelihood of working for you.  Standard fees apply.

For more general information, check the Family Area link from the International Society for Neuronal Regulation, on the following page: http://www.isnr.org.


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