What is Neurofeedback?

Dr. Nicole Cousineau
Special to Riverview Register

Like many professions, Chiropractors are required to take continuing education classes to stay current with advances in health care. But Chiropractors seek natural drug-free alternatives. Recently while attending one of these classes, I was exposed to something called Neurofeedback. 

Neurofeedback is by no means a new development. In fact it has been in use for decades. I sat in a chair and a skull cap was placed on my head. I had to sit there for 14 minutes, seven with my eyes open and seven with my eyes closed. The computer simply recorded my brain wave activity. 

The test called an EEG was completed and the results were compared in a database with thousands of other results. It reported different areas of my brain that were not performing as well as they should. 

Next came the treatment with Neurofeedback. I watched a movie that I was able to choose. So you can watch anything you like. I had to wear glasses that look like a large pair of safety glasses; the only difference was these glasses had small flickering lights on them. 

You wear headphones to hear the movie. The volume goes up and down while the picture gets light and dark. These things cause your brain to try and correct them.

Those things combined with the flickering lights create exercises for your brain. 

The immediate effect made me a little tired. A little later, I felt I was thinking clearer, like a fog had lifted. That night I slept better than I had in years. Uninterrupted sleep is important for healing. 

Each session lasts for 30 minutes. Initially the effects only lasted a short time but with each additional treatment the improvements lasted for longer. The number of sessions needed is different for everyone.  

Neurofeedback has been known to help several conditions including chronic pain and concussion. One of the reasons I liked the treatment is that the results are often permanent.

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