What is neurofeedback?
Neurofeedback, also called EEG biofeedback or neurotherapy, makes use of the brain’s capacity for change to reshape brain networks. It is a way to directly train the brain to function better. Neurofeedback is a research-supported treatment to sharpen attention, relieve anxiety, enhance mood, and improve learning, and behavior…without medication.
Although the technology is complex, the process is simple, painless, and non-invasive. It is just learning. You learn to alter your brain activity the same way you learn every other skill. You learn through feedback and practice. What is new in neurofeedback is that you are guided by a form of feedback that was previously not available to you. With neurofeedback, you get instantaneous information or feedback about changes in your brain’s electrical activity. Every half second, your brain activity is compared to your target or goal for change. You get a signal and “reward” when you meet the goal. No signal or reward when you do not.
Take a look at a nice video explanation done by friend and colleague, Mike Cohen.
See the problem, then correct it.
Many psychological disorders result from problems in brain function. Medications just treat the symptoms and do not correct the source of the problem in the brain. At the NeuroDevelopment Center, our approach is different. We measure brain function with a quantitative EEG brain map, so we can see the reason for your difficulties. (See the example below). Then we target the brain problem for change through neurofeedback brain training. This allows you to reshape your brain, not just mask your symptoms. Learn more.
Repetition to harness neuroplasticity
Neurofeedback is just learning, guided by immediate feedback.
Neurofeedback is like the game when children have to find a hidden object. You give them hints: “You’re getting warmer” when they get closer to the target, and “You’re getting colder” when they are headed away from the goal. With frequent enough hints, they can find the object, no matter where it is hidden. The hints are feedback about their efforts to reach their goal. As long as they learn from the feedback and adjust their search based on these hints, they will be able to reach the target.
When you do neurofeedback, the process is exactly the same – feedback guided learning. You are trying to reach your brain change targets. You get a cue or signal every half second, to tell you when you have reached the brain training target and when you have not. With 20 neurofeedback sessions, you get 72,000 hints. That’s a lot of opportunities to learn, to guide your brain towards your goals.