LEARN NEUROPTIMAL NEUROFEEDBACK
WHAT IS NEUROFEEDBACK
NeurOptimal® is a neurofeedback system. Neurofeedback or EEG biofeedback is a safe, 100% non-invasive, drug-free, way of training and strengthening the brain to enable the central nervous system to make the best use of the brain’s natural resources.
In neurofeedback, a person's brainwaves are monitored on a real time basis while listening to music played through the neurofeedback system. Tiny sensors are used to monitor the brainwaves. The process is totally non-invasive and safe. Much like an electrocardiogram (ECG) test for your heart, the sensors simply record the signals and do not put anything back into the brain. During a neurofeedback session information is provided back to the brain in a manner that exercises and trains the brain.
First discovered in the 1960's by Dr. Barry Sterman, then Professor Emeritus, Neurobiology and Bio-Behavioral Psychiatry, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), the current state of using neurofeedback to train the brain is the result of decades of research and clinical studies and advancements in computing technology. NeurOptimal® itself has been around for about 17 years.
Neurofeedback systems utilize the brain’s ability to self-regulate and self-organize, when provided with needed information. NeurOptimal® provides information to the brain on a dynamic real time basis based on your moment to moment activity. By monitoring your brain wave patterns, NeurOptimal® is able to detect when your brain is moving into moments of instability or turbulence during shifts from one state to another. The system then alerts the brain to any turbulence or instability detected by a momentary pause in music being played through the system. The displays of turbulence or instability might be indications of a shift towards an undesired state such as a state of higher stress, a loss of focus or depression as examples.
As the brain starts to move into instability in a particular brainwave frequency range and the music pauses very briefly, the brain immediately brings itself "back to the present". The pause in the music is the feedback provided to the brain that encourages it to “reset” and self-correct. This happens over and over again during the duration of the neurofeedback session. Over time, with continued training sessions, the brain learns to work around instabilities, instead of falling headlong into them, resulting in increased brain efficiency, brain flexibility and brain resilience.
Because NeurOptimal® works with the central nervous system at the rate and order of change it is comfortable with, and doesn't push the brain in any direction, NeurOptimal neurofeedback training is very safe. In addition, the system is totally non-invasive. The sensors used to pick up the brainwaves simply record the signals much like the ones used in an ECG. Nothing is put back into the brain. Information presented to the brain is through earphones or speakers and through one’s normal hearing mechanism.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING A NEUROFEEDBACK SESSION
A NeurOptimal® neurofeedback session is a pleasant experience. Your brain does all the work. No conscious effort is required on your part. Your central nervous system is hard-wired to take in information and use it to organize itself.
Before your first neurofeedback session, you will be asked to fill out a brief questionnaire describing how you are feeling and what you wish to achieve in coming for your training sessions.
You will be seated in a comfortable chair facing a computer screen. Three tiny sensors are attached to your ears and a couple to your scalp using water soluble conductive paste. These sensors pick up the electrical activity of your brain. The system simply reads the signals. Much like a ECG, the system is simply reading the signal. There is nothing invasive about the training session.
You then put on ear phones similar to those that come with your mobile phone. The program is started and you will listen to music specifically composed for the neurofeedback system and watch fractal images on the screen or watch a movie. A fractal is a never ending pattern that repeats itself at different scales. Examples of fractals are plentiful in nature as in corals, clouds and hurricanes. You can choose to close your eyes as well during training. Younger children can view their own DVD’s in order to keep their attention long enough for training to take place.
A baseline may be recorded before the start of the training session. During training, very brief pauses in the music or movie which may sound like scratches will occur. This is the system giving precise feedback to the brain. It is these interruptions that give the brain the vital information it needs to reorganize itself to operate more optimally. The interruptions to the music are the primary feedback to the brain which is why it is fine to close your eyes during training. No conscious intervention on your part is required.
The length of a NeurOptimal Neurofeedback session takes around 33.5 minutes to complete.
NeurOptimal® has been effective in helping with attention deficit disorder / attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), memory loss, learning disabilities, Autism Spectrum Disorder and the cognitive side effects of chemotherapy (chemo brain).
The American Pediatric Academy (APA) has endorsed neurofeedback as a “Level 1/Best Support” treatment for children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). The APA has also equated neurofeedback with medication in terms of efficacy for resolving Attention Deficit Hyperactivity. The APA is an organization of 60,000 pediatricians committed to the optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults.
NeurOptimal® neurofeedback has been effective in helping with stress, anxiety, depression, addiction recovery, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), sleep disorders, migraines, headaches.
Neurofeedback has been endorsed by The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for stress reduction. The FDA is the government agency in the U.S. responsible for regulating and supervising food safety, dietary supplements, pharmaceutical drugs (medications), medical devices and vaccines.
Students - NeurOptimal® neurofeedback helps with focus, engagement and increasing attention span. Students of all ages learn faster and more effectively. More of what is learnt is retained.
Business Professionals - NeurOptimal®neurofeedback helps with focus, attention, memory and managing anxiety. It helps increase immunity to stress and promotes a calm but alert state of mind. As with world class athletes, mastering one's mental state is critical to successful business leaders.
Athletes and Performers - NeurOptimal® neurofeedback has helped opera singers, stage performers and athletes excel in their chosen fields. Where performances of world class athletes are separated by hundredths, sometimes thousands of seconds, tapping the potential of the mind can mean the difference between success and failure