Neurobiofeeback

Dr. Conrad Bowden
Sara Woodwark, MA

Neurobiofeedback (brainwave biofeedback) is a computerized learning technique in which an individual's brainwave activity is fed back to them for the purposes of learning how to better self -regulate arousal/activity aspects of their brain waves. Neurotherapy can be used to increase relaxation (over arousal), activation (under arousal), and stabilization (instability) and results in more efficient regulation of energy level, mood, concentration, and stability of consciousness. It also facilitates the ability to shift between states of consciousness such as from concentration to relaxation, and from being awake to going to sleep. Changes in brain wave activity due to neurotherapy occur at an organismic level without requiring conscious monitoring and application. The mind learns to better balance itself, a little like someone learning to ride a bicycle. Given the right circumstances it just happens.

Through the process of neurofeedback distressing internal stimulation is diminished and a relaxed external focus is increased. Negative internal stimulation is reduced whether related to long standing traumas and emotions or to recent or current life stressors. People going through neurotherapy report feeling calmer, more settled, relaxed, clearer, and happier.

The changes due to engaging in neurotherapy occur naturally without effort on the part of the client. The visual (pictorial) and auditory (music) feedback is given in such a way that the brain naturally attends to and responds to the feedback as to its current state. Neurotherapy is a good way to address issues that have a strong physiological component that is not easily addressed through more traditional verbally based approaches. Brainwave feedback occurs across a wide range of brain frequencies, engaging the whole brain, not only the brain frequencies used during conscious thought.

EEG Neurotherapy is being used with people presenting with a wide variety of difficulties. Common referrals are for attention, learning difficulties and behavior problems in children. Many adults experiencing anxiety and depression have found EEG Neurotherapy useful.

The research base, public knowledge and general acceptance for neurotherapy is expanding. In 2002, the Canadian Pediatric Society in a position statement concerning its use as a treatment for attentional problems concluded that "Neurofeedback offers an alternative for patients who present with significant side effects with stimulant medication, show a poor treatment response or refuse to consider medication."

Further information can be found at:
Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback (AAPB)
International Society of Neuronal Regulation (ISNR)

The worldwide NeuroCare Pro practitioners directory is at: www.adnf.org/neurofeedback_directory.htm.