What is Neurotherapy?
Simply defined, it is the process of helping to reduce or alleviate symptoms which are brain-based. At LIFE Counseling we take time to look at the whole person; behavioral, psycho-social, and emotional. Knowing that the brain is at the center of regulating this, we have invested a lot of time, energy, and resources into learning how to help you and your brain become more intentional, focused and equipped. We utilize a variety of tools in neurotherapy, however, our primary and most effective is Neurofeedback. We also help individuals though the use of Heart-Rate Variability (HRV), Audio-Visual Entrainment (AVE), Cranial-Electrical Stimulation (CES), ANT Therapy, Music, neuro-education, supplement and neurotransmitter education, assessments, and we are always adding more! :)
What is Neurofeedback?
A Quick Summary:
Like other forms of biofeedback, Neurofeedback Training uses a non-invasive monitoring device to provide moment-to-moment information to an individual on the state of their neurophysiological functioning. Sensors are placed on the scalp to detect, amplify, and record brain wave activity, which is either inhibited or rewarded towards a more desired range. Over time the brain is trained to learn new optimal patterns of functioning, which is reflected in improved physical, cognitive, and emotional functioning.
A Comprehensive summary:
The brain is an AMAZING organ! It is made up of 100 billion neurons and those neurons have over 100 trillion different connections. The neurons communicate with one another by means of electrical pulses, which send neurotransmitters from one neuron to the other. The electrical pulses throughout the brain are known as brain waves. This electrical activity, when under or over preforming can produce a dysregulated state impacting academic, emotional, social, and physical area of life. Some of this dysregulation can include ADHD, addictions, anxiety, depression, OCD, and PTSD. When the brain is not preforming at an optimal level it is out of sync. It is similar to listening to a song in which a singer is out of pitch, or an instrument is not in the right key. It just doesn't sound right. This is where Neurofeedback enters to save the day! You see, the brain is capable of adapting and reorganizing, which scientists refer to as neuroplasticity. Neurofeedback provides the brain the opportunity it needs to learn new pathways, helping it to perform more optimally. This happens through a process of rewarding electrical activity over and over and over again, as it achieves a more desired state of relaxation or focus. This repetitive rewarding, also known as positive reinforcement, allows old pathways to lose their strength and allow for new pathways to growth and strengthen.
At LIFE Counseling we utilize state-of-the-art software (Neuroguide) and technology to help your brain learn a more optimal level of functioning. This is accomplished in three parts:
- First, we conduct a functional brain imaging assessment known as a qEEG (qualitative electroencephalography), or "brain mapping." This assessment utilizes 19 sensors or channels to read the electrical activity of your brain and translate it into interpretative data and images, allowing us to understand where dysregulation is occurring in your brain and where training would be most effective.
- Second, utilizing FDA approved databases we compare your brain's data to others with more optimal functioning and establish statistical data points of how dysregulated your brain might be and a baseline of where to train it towards. These are known as z-scores, or statistical representations of the norm.
- Third, we utilize LORETA (Low Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography), a 3-dimensional brain imaging technique that allow us to look deep into the brain to identify and train dysregulation in entire networks of neuronal activity, as well as assess and train connectivity and processing speed issues between different parts of the brain.
Combining all this data we have established a baseline for where to train your brain by rewarding it to a more optimal level of functioning. We train using these three components with a type of neurofeedback called LORETA Z-Score Neurofeedback. We utilize 19 channels, z-scores, and neural networks to bring about training that is effective, efficient, and less costly to you. Training is usually accomplished between 20-40 sessions, with length of time depending on severity of the dysregulation and condition of the environment of the brain. Our process is holistic in nature, we won’t just focus on neurofeedback, but will work to identify area of growth with diet, sleep, exercise, and though patterns. Our goal is to bring about greater harmony in the "music" your brain is making. This state-of-the-art technology and software allows us to do just that.
There are tens of thousands of neurofeedback providers worldwide that utilize 1-8 channel surface-level training (training the amplitude of particular frequencies, and only a few locations of the brain at a time). We are proud to be one of a few hundred providers worldwide to be able to utilize the cutting-edge 19-channel LORETA Z-Score Neurofeedback. This type of neurofeedback is FDA approved, is utilized by medical centers and universities worldwide, used by the US Military to help troops in combat and reintegrating post deployment, and has been proven effective and efficacious in hundreds of published research studies. It works, and has proved to be effective!
Who can benefit from Neurofeedback?
We can break this down into two groups: Symptoms/Dysregulation and Peak Performance
The first group are individuals seeking to alleviate symptoms of ADHD, anxiety, depressions, OCD, PTSD, addictions, autism, musicians, chronic pain, headaches, etc.
The second group of individuals seeking to increase mental stamina, productivity, performance, memory, focus, and calm/patience. This form of training, known as Peak Performance, it utilized by athletes, students, professionals, surgeons, and others looking to stay sharp and gain an extra advantage.
Many athletes focus on physical agility and skill to compete well, but only a few invest the time and resources into training their mental stamina and focus it takes to compete at a higher level. Many Olympians, Professional athletes, and military personal have chosen to use Neurofeedback to gain their competitive advantage.