Neurofeedback Brain Treatment
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The River Source Treatment Center is delighted to provide "Brain Training (Neurofeedback)". Brain Training is a treatment modality that helps addicts with overcoming chemical dependency to drugs and alcohol. But wait, that's not all. Brain training also helps to overcome the following:
Even though "Brain Training" can relieve the urges from addictions within 2 sessions and the benefits are effective, the modalities and services provided at The River Source Inpatient Treatment Center help to change habits for the long term. We at The River Source provide our clients with a world renowned holistic approach to mind, body, and spirit wellness: we combine "Brain Training" with: Neurofeedback
Neurofeedback also known as NeuroTherapy, EEG Biofeedback, Brainwave Biofeedback or Brain Training is a natural, medication-free approach to improving attention, reducing impulsivity, enhancing mood, and improving performance in all aspects of life. Neurofeedback is a form of brain exercise that allows you to retrain and rebalance your brain for optimal performance, while helping to improve memory, mood and energy levels. Through the use of non-invasive computer technology, neurofeedback monitors brainwave activity and encourages healthy brain function. Your brain learns to become calmer, more alert, and more flexible. Using specialized electronic equipment, the computer reads your brainwaves and provides instant "feedback" to you through video images, sound, or both. This feedback tells your brain to produce more or less of certain kinds of brainwaves, encouraging it to activate differently - literally retraining your brain toward healthier patterns. Neurofeedback is a customized exercise regime for the brain which gives you similar benefits (achieving and maintaining strength and flexibility) obtained from following a consistent workout program at the gym. With regular training, you will see an overall reduction or elimination of symptoms, increased cognitive flexibility, improved intellectual cognitive flexibility, improved intellectual functioning, and better emotional regulation.
In neurofeedback, the information that is fed back to the client is EEG (electroencephalogram) data read and collected by sensors placed on the head. Very tiny amounts of electric energy are read and processed by electronic and computer equipment to provide moment by moment information about the brain’s activity. This activity is shown to the neurofeedback practitioner as wave patterns on a computer screen. Clients hear sounds/tones and sometimes visual feedback (animations, puzzles, and video displays/graphics), when the brain “behaves” as desired. The goal is explained to the client, and the client’s brain learns how to make that happen without the person knowing how they do it. Simply wanting to hear the beeps seems to be enough to get the brain to cooperate. The result is that a client practices brain activity in a healthy range, and the brain gradually develops the ability to maintain that behavior by itself.
An assessment of brainwave patterns or brain regulation is completed prior to the beginning the Neurofeedback training sessions. Brainwave activity is measured with an electroencephalograph (EEG). The EEG biofeedback equipment is connected to the individual with sensors that are placed on the scalp and ears. A computer then analyzes the brain waves. The person’s brainwave activity is then observed on a computer monitor. The data from this assessment is combined with a variety of other information gained from the client interview. Based on all the information gathered a training plan is then generated.
Neurofeedback has now been studied for over 40 years, and many of its clinical applications have been identified for quite some time. As with any new treatment, the literature published about it will focus on areas in which the treatment is most successful. Since the brain is so vital to many aspects of our lives, improving overall brain function tends to have widespread positive results. It's not unusual for someone to report that though they came in for help with one problem, they have found help they didn't expect in other areas. However, it is clear that neurofeedback does some things much better than others. Here are some areas in which neurofeedback performs exceptionally well:
Alcoholism and Drug Abuse: Neurofeedback has been found helpful in preventing relapse for those recovering from chemical dependency. Research on this began in the late 1980's and continues.
Anxiety: Anxiety is sometimes the result of a brain that is working too "fast" and needs to be calmed. This would certainly be the case for the types of anxiety that are more medical or genetic in origin.
Depression: Depression often involves problems in the frontal lobes that respond to brainwave training. This is one of the cases where the treatment of something with neurofeedback may result in needing less medication, or a client begins to look overmedicated.
Neurotherapists often conceptualize ADD and ADHD as the result of too much slow brainwave activity, particularly in the frontal lobes. Training the brain, and especially the frontal lobes, to be "stronger" at a more normal rate of activity will tend to reduce problems with concentration and focus. In some cases learning disabilities also benefit from neurofeedback that includes work at the location in the brain associated with the impaired area (reading, speech, etc.)
Elizabeth Hartney, PhD, a psychologist with extensive experience in research, practice and teaching in the field of addictions and concurrent disorders, states in her About.com article on October 15, 2009 (Neurofeedback and Neurotherapy as Treatments for Addiction - Changing Brainwaves May Help Overcome Addictive Tendencies) ”that brainwave patterns typically seen in people with addictions, as well as the children of alcoholics (even those who do not drink), is too many fast brainwaves and too few slow brainwaves. This creates a lot of “mental chatter” for the person and can cause them to have a hard time quieting their mind. Drinking or drug use can be a way of slowing down the brainwaves and self-calming, which is why so many people with addictions also have problems with anxiety.
Another pattern often seen in people with addictions is the opposite – too many slow brainwaves, which makes it difficult for the individual to focus and hold their attention. People with attentional problems such as ADHD have this pattern, and they may cope by using stimulant drugs –- prescribed, over-the counter (including coffee), or illicit drugs - to speed up their brainwaves and help them focus. With the help of neurotherapy, they may be able to bring their brainwaves into a more functional range and no longer need drugs to feel calm and focused. Neurotherapy can be a good choice for people with addictions because it is a drug-free approach. Once the brainwaves have been adjusted to function more effectively, the effects are permanent. People who have been dependent on drugs for years can become drug-free.
Neurotherapy can be used in conjunction with other therapies such as counseling, motivational interviewing, EMDR, art therapy and lifestyle changes. This is important for overcoming addiction, because there are many factors -- genetics, brainwave imbalances, stress, social influences, and so on -– that both cause the addiction and keep it going. Each factor needs to be addressed to enable the individual to find new ways of coping that do not involve the addictive behavior or lifestyle.
Neurotherapy may help your inner world function better without the need for alcohol or other drugs to feel “normal.” However, you will have to work on making your outer world supportive of a life free of addiction. Counseling may help, and neurotherapy may also help to give you the focus, motivation and determination to succeed.”
If you or a loved one is looking for treatment for any type of substance abuse, please call NOW:1-888-687-7332 or 480-827-0322 (your call is confidential)