(From CenterForBrain.com) Neurofeedback is an innovative technology which harnesses the brain’s neuroplasticity – its ability to change itself – in order to bring about improvement in a variety of symptoms which can interfere with life satisfaction. This non-medicine approach trains the brain to function optimally, thus improving attention, mood, learning ability and more.
Neurofeedback, a form of biofeedback, begins with measuring electrical activity in the brain via a non-invasive EEG. The neurofeedback practitioner analyzes that information and programs a training goal into a computer, which then runs a video game for the participant to play. The goal of the game might be for the brain to speed up, in the case of someone who is depressed, or to operate more slowly, if the person suffers from anxiety.
Whenever the “player’s” brain reaches that goal frequency, if only for a moment, he is rewarded with a beep or a flashing light. With the help of these rewards and with repetition, the brain learns how to more easily and more frequently operate at the more desirable level. When that occurs, many bothersome symptoms caused by the formerly dysregulated brain dissipate. This result is similar to the result one gets from frequently practicing a golf swing until “muscle memory” becomes strong and a good swing occurs more often than a poor one.
Changes in the EEG due to feedback tend to correlate with improved behavior, mood and attention. Change in EEG behavior is a direct reflection of changes in the way the neurons fire. Once these changes are practiced and learned, the effects tend to hold. Additionally, these changes often result in reduced reliance on medications or allow medications that weren’t working well to work better.
Read more about neurofeedback here.