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ADHD: Brain Training, Neurofeedback, Diet, and More.

ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, affects millions of children and adults (up to 5% of children in the US). More and more evidence suggests that brain training may be key to help these individuals. With this in mind, we put together our most recent articles on the topic to a) help you better understand what is going in the brain of a person with ADHD, and b) provide you with up-to-date information on what can be done to fight the disorder and improve the lives of people suffering from it. We particularly thank Dr. Rabiner from Duke University for writing many of these articles.
What is ADHD? What kind of attention is involved in ADHD? ADHD may be considered as a problem in the willful control of attention as opposed to a pure deficit in the ability to pay attent...

Electroencephalographic eeg Neurofeedback Another Approach to Treat Adhd

Neurofeedback: Another Treatment for ADHD In just the last 20 years, Attention Deficit %26 Hyperactive Disorder, (ADHD) has become America's leading childhood psychiatric disorder. Approximately 2% to 6% of school-age children are diagnosed with ADHD (Raz 2004).According to Barkley (1998) the number of children affected by ADHD can vary from 1% to 20 %, depending on how one chooses to define it, the population studies, the geographic locale of the survey, etc. ADHD is characterized by the inability to self-regulate focused attention. Children with hyperactivity are impulsive and behaviorally disinherited. The condition is developmentally disabling which, if left uncontrolled persists into adolescence and adulthood (Edwards, 1995). Frontal Lobe and ADHD Research ...

Neurofeedback‚€™s Re-birth?

Neurofeedback Gains Popularity and Lab Attention (New York Times) The treatment is also gaining attention from mainstream researchers, including some former skeptics. The National Institute of Mental Health recently sponsored its first study of neurofeedback for A.D.H.D.: a randomized, controlled trial of 36 subjects. The results are to be announced Oct. 26 at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. In an interview in the summer, the study‚€™s director, Dr. L. Eugene Arnold, an emeritus professor of psychiatry at¬ Ohio State, noted that there had been ‚€œquite a bit of improvement‚€ in many of the children‚€™s behavior, as reported by parents and teachers. Comment: The article provides a good overview, and points out one of the main bottlenecks for w...

Heart Chamber Orchestra

The Heart Chamber Orchestra consists of classical musicians who use their heartbeats to control a computer composition and visualization environment. To my best knowledge, this is the first example of "group biofeedback". The musicians are equipped with ECG (electrocardiogram) sensors. A computer monitors and analyzes the state of these 12 hearts in real time. The acquired information is used to compose a musical score with the aid of computer software. It is a living score dependent on the state of the hearts. While the musicians are playing, their heartbeats influence and change the composition and vice versa. The musicians and the electronic composition are linked via the hearts in a circular motion, a feedback structure. The emerging music evolves entirely during the performance. The ...

Head Chaise: Couching One's Thoughts into a Brain Wave Sofa

From Scientific American Two European designers, Dries Verbruggen and Lucas Maassen used their alpha waves as a source of inspiration for their design work, which resulted in a piece of furniture, the Brain Wave Couch. ‚€œThe process is a wink to a rather futuristic design process,‚€ the couch creators wrote in a press release, ‚€œfor which a designer merely has to close his or her eyes, or merely rest, to have the brain do all the work, and create the data needed to have the CNC machine cut the shape of the sofa.‚€ The x-axis of the couch represents Maassen‚€™s brain waves in hertz, while the y-axis shows the amount of alpha activity as a percentage, and the z-axis is the time in milliseconds. Once the foam core of the sofa was completed, the designers covered it by hand in soft gray fe...

Neurofeedback Outcomes in Clients with Asperger's Syndrome

Authors: Thompson L, Thompson M, Reid A This paper summarizes data from a review of neurofeedback (NFB) training with 150 clients with Asperger's Syndrome (AS) and 9 clients with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) seen over a 15 year period (1993-2008) in a clinical setting. The main objective was to investigate whether electroncephalographic (EEG) biofeedback, also called neurofeedback (NFB), made a significant difference in clients diagnosed with AS. An earlier paper (Thompson et al. 2009) reviews the symptoms of AS, highlights research findings and theories concerning this disorder, discusses QEEG patterns in AS (both single and 19-channel), and details a hypothesis, based on functional neuroanatomy, concerning how NFB, often paired with biofeedback (BFB), might produce a change in sympto...

The use of biofeedback in clinical virtual reality: the intrepid project

Authors: Repetto C, Gorini A, Algeri D, Vigna C, Gaggioli A, Riva G In our protocol for the treatment of Generalized Anxiety Disorders we use Virtual reality (VR) to facilitate emotional regulation and the relaxation process. Using a biofeedback biomonitoring system (GSR, HR, Thermal) the patient is made aware of his or her reactions through the modification of some features of the VR environment in real time. Using mental exercises the patient learns to control these physiological parameters and using the feedback provided by the virtual environment is able to gauge his or her success. To test this concept, we planned a randomized controlled trial (NCT00602212), including three groups of 15 patients each (for a total of 45 patients): (1) the VR group, (2) the non-VR group, and (3) the wai...

Neurofeedback-based motor imagery training for brain-computer interface

Authors: Hwang HJ, Kwon K, Im CH In the present study, we propose a neurofeedback-based motor imagery training system for EEG-based brain-computer interface (BCI). The proposed system can help individuals get the feel of motor imagery by presenting them with real-time brain activation maps on their cortex. Ten healthy participants took part in our experiment, half of whom were trained by the suggested training system and the others did not use any training. All participants in the trained group succeeded in performing motor imagery after a series of trials to activate their motor cortex without any physical movements of their limbs. To confirm the effect of the suggested system, we recorded EEG signals for the trained group around sensorimotor cortex while they were imagining either left o...

Neurofeedback and brain-computer interface clinical applications

Authors: Birbaumer N, Ramos Murguialday A, Weber C, Montoya P Most of the research devoted to BMI development consists of methodological studies comparing different online mathematical algorithms, ranging from simple linear discriminant analysis (LDA) (Dornhege et al., 2007) to nonlinear artificial neural networks (ANNs) or support vector machine (SVM) classification. Single cell spiking for the reconstruction of hand movements requires different statistical solutions than electroencephalography (EEG)-rhythm classification for communication. In general, the algorithm for BMI applications is computationally simple and differences in classification accuracy between algorithms used for a particular purpose are small. Only a very limited number of clinical studies with neurological patients ar...

Is neurofeedback an efficacious treatment for ADHD? A randomised controlled clinical trial

CONCLUSIONS: Superiority of the combined NF training indicates clinical efficacy of NF in children with ADHD. Future studies should further address the specificity of effects and how to optimise the benefit of NF as treatment module for ADHD. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Neurofeedback-based motor imagery training for brain-computer interface

Authors: Hwang HJ, Kwon K, Im CH In the present study, we propose a neurofeedback-based motor imagery training system for EEG-based brain-computer interface (BCI). The proposed system can help individuals get the feel of motor imagery by presenting them with real-time brain activation maps on their cortex. Ten healthy participants took part in our experiment, half of whom were trained by the suggested training system and the others did not use any training. All participants in the trained group succeeded in performing motor imagery after a series of trials to activate their motor cortex without any physical movements of their limbs. To confirm the effect of the suggested system, we recorded EEG signals for the trained group around sensorimotor cortex while they were imagining either left o...

QEEG guided neurofeedback therapy in personality disorders

This study provides the first evidence for positive effects of neurofeedback treatment in antisocial personality disorders. Further study with controls is warranted. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Biofeedback Helps Military Personnel Cope with War

I’ve long been a believer of the benefits of biofeedback, a simple technique anybody can learn to help control their own physiological responses, such as your breathing or muscle tension. I know because I spent 3 years in graduate school heading up the biofeedback program at my graduate school, sitting in countless supervisions watching young therapists learn to effectively wield the technique to help hundreds of clients. So it was no great surprised to read about a new study in the journal Biofeedback that describes the successes achieved in North Carolina at the Wounded Warrior Barracks, the first rehabilitation facility of its kind. The purpose of this biofeedback program is to help US Marines and Navy Corpsmen adjust to their injuries and assist them in the development of skill...

Brain Plasticity Arrives in Toronto OR Why Haven't I Heard of Neurofeedback?

Over breakfast this morning, I read a Toronto Star article by Judy Steed about brain plasticity and the Rotman Research Institute. While I was delighted to have the ability of the adult brain to change discussed in a very public place, I have to admit I experienced a resurgence of the frustration and annoyance I often get when I read about medical centres "discovering" plasticity. I don't mean discovering in the sense of being the first to uncover the phenomenon. Because they just aren't the first anymore. I mean "discovering" in the sense of reporting on a phenomenon that is well-known in many circles and has been for some time, but announcing it as if they were the first. (Perhaps a bit like the claim that Europeans "discovered" the Americas which annoys our native peoples, but that'...

A learning theory for reward-modulated spike-timing-dependent plasticity with application to biofeedback

This article provides tools for an analytic treatment of reward-modulated STDP, which allows us to predict under which conditions reward-modulated STDP will achieve a desired learning effect. These analytical results imply that neurons can learn through reward-modulated STDP to classify not only spatial but also temporal firing patterns of presynaptic neurons. They also can learn to respond to specific presynaptic firing patterns with particular spike patterns. Finally, the resulting learning theory predicts that even difficult credit-assignment problems, where it is very hard to tell which synaptic weights should be modified in order to increase the global reward for the system, can be solved in a self-organizing manner through reward-modulated STDP. This yields an explanation for a funda...

Feeling Like A Chicken With its Head (Brain) Cut Off?

This is a "reprint" of an entertaining and educational article from Dr. Jeff Carmen, who created the pirHEG system I write about on my website and in other blog posts. With his permission I'm re-posting it here for those of you interested in: - HEG - the frontal lobes - learning to put the brakes on yourself ;-) He talks primarily about the prefrontal cortex -- for those of you who read my blog (and thanks for that! ), that will be roughly what I talk about more loosely as the "frontal lobes" or the "executive system" -- that area of the brain sitting behind your forehead. He also refers to the frontal lobes/prefrontal cortex as being primarily "inhibitory", meaning that instead of the activity of the executive system being dedicated to Getting Stuff Done (e.g., movements, sensory activi...

Development and preliminary evaluation of a prototype audiovisual biofeedback device

Authors: Venkat RB, Sawant A, Suh Y, George R, Keall PJ The aim of this research was to investigate the effectiveness of a novel audio-visual biofeedback respiratory training tool to reduce respiratory irregularity. The audiovisual biofeedback system acquires sample respiratory waveforms of a particular patient and computes a patient-specific waveform to guide the patient's subsequent breathing. Two visual feedback models with different displays and cognitive loads were investigated: a bar model and a wave model. The audio instructions were ascending/descending musical tones played at inhale and exhale respectively to assist in maintaining the breathing period. Free-breathing, bar model and wave model training was performed on ten volunteers for 5 min for three repeat sessions. A total of ...

Energetic assessment of trunk postural modifications induced by a wearable audio-biofeedback system

Authors: Giansanti D, Dozza M, Chiari L, Maccioni G, Cappello A This paper investigates the trunk postural modifications induced by a wearable device which assesses the trunk sway and provides biofeedback information through sonification of trunk kinematics. The device is based on an inertial wearable sensing unit including three mono-axial accelerometers and three rate gyroscopes embedded and mounted orthogonally. The biofeedback device was tested on nine healthy subjects during quiet stance in different conditions of sensory limitation eyes closed on solid surface, eyes open on foam cushion surface, eyes closed on foam cushion surface. Five trials were performed for each condition; the order of the trials was randomized. The results reported in this paper show how subjects reduced their ...

MInd Science from Dan Rather Reports

This is 52 minute television program from Dan Rather that covers a wealth of information about the brain, its plasticity, its connections with meditation and other ways we can change our brain's functioning. A bit of commitment...but worth it for the overview on brain plasticity.... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Brain Tune-Up

Researchers in the Department of Occupational Therapy and Occupational Science at the University of Missouri are using neurofeedback to “retrain” autistic children’s brains. Children play video games while sensors are attached to their scalps; they are “rewarded” with movements on the screens and special sounds for concentrating and focusing. From the April 23rd Science Daily: If attention wanes, the rocket on the screen slows, sounds stop and the color changes until more attention is given to the image. As this occurs, researches watch another screen that monitors brainwave activity. The brainwave activity is measured by placing sensors on the scalp. ‚€œThe more neurofeedback training given to a child with autism, the more often the correct brain pathways are...

The effect of biofeedback training on affective regulation and simulated car-racing performance

Authors: Edmonds WA, Tenenbaum G, Mann DT, Johnson M, Kamata A The foundation of this study was based on an idiosyncratic concept, which uses probabilistic determinations (Kamata, Tenenbaum, & Hanin, 2002) to verify the utility and effectiveness of a biofeedback intervention by manipulating affective performance states in a race-car simulator. Nine males completed five separate time-trials of a simulated racing task and were then randomly assigned to one of three arousal regulation treatment conditions: (1) optimal, (2) poor, and (3) attention control. Following the biofeedback intervention, participants underwent another series of race trials to determine the effectiveness of the arousal regulation intervention. The results indicated that there were relative similarities in the streng...

Alpha neurofeedback improves the maintaining ability of alpha activity

Authors: Cho MK, Jang HS, Jeong SH, Jang IS, Choi BJ, Lee MG The effects of alpha-neurofeedback (ANF) on electroencephalographic alpha-activity were investigated. Each session consisted of a 2.5-min eye-opened state and 17.5-min of ANF, which was divided into 16 1.25-min bins. Alpha amplitudes were gradually increased as the session was repeated. The maximum value at the start of ANF gradually decreased as time passed, but the slowdown of alpha-activity during each session was decreased as the session was repeated. The correlation between alpha-activity at the end of ANF and at the following session's eye-opened state was highly significant. These results showed that ANF enhances the ability of alpha-activity to maintain itself rather than the increase of alpha-amplitude during intrasessio...

What Does Change Feel Like?

I joined a conversation over at the Shift in Action website which was hosted by a member named Rod Sherwin. He posed a question about how we can know when shifts in consciousness -- personal or societal -- are happening. How can we know when we experience not just big dramatic shifts in our ways of being, but even the little movements that might take us from 3 out of 10 on some scale of change to 3.5 out of 10? In working with people's brains using nonlinear methods of feedback, it is very common indeed that people experience changes - shifts in their ways of being, thinking, feeling, and/or acting - that they are just not aware of at the time of the shift. Every neurofeedback practitioner I speak to has stories of people changing in all sorts of both subtle and dramatic ways, but not seei...

Brain Training Without Equipment: Mindfulness Meditation

Imagine yourself sitting back for a nonlinear neurofeedback session.... That means that your brain is going to have a "conversation" with itself (which I recently described in my newsletter, Not Just Neurofeedback, as the brain looking at itself in a mirror - let me know if you want to be on the list and have access to back copies like this). Your conscious mind doesn't really have anything specific to do in order to "make" something happen on purpose". In fact, the best thing you can do is to get out of the way. ;- ) But what does "get out of the way" mean, exactly? How do you "get out of the way"? (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Hack Your Brain? Sure

Although brain hacking has been going on for nearly two decades, the folks over at Network World magazine thinks it’s some kind of “new” phenomenon. Describing experiments done on monkeys and the manipulation of video games, the reporter apparently is unaware of a little something called EEG neurofeedback. Neurofeedback has been used to treat psychiatric disorders since the early 1990s (I know first-hand, because I was involved in neurofeedback training as a grad student). Neurofeedback is a researched and proven technique for allowing people to “train their brains” to reduce common symptoms of many psychiatric disorders. Most of the research and heavy lifting with this technique has been done with ADHD, but it’s also been researched and shown to work w...

Integrating a Portable Biofeedback Device into Clinical Practice for Patients with Anxiety Disorders

This study examined the effectiveness of a portable Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia (RSA) biofeedback device as an adjunct to CBT in persons with anxiety disorders and other disorders associated with autonomic dysfunction attending outpatient treatment. Participants were 24 individuals attending outpatient cognitive behavioral treatment for a range of anxiety disorders. Participants were assessed over a 3 week period. Outcomes included measures of anxiety (STAI-Y), sleep disturbances (PSQI), anger (STAEI), and subjective questions about the effectiveness of the device as a treatment adjunct. Significant reductions were found for anxiety and anger and for certain sleep variables (e.g. sleep latency). There was a significant dos-effect in that those who were more compliant had significantly gre...

Is Neurofeedback just a "placebo effect"?

I had a great question the other day from a reader: "My question is this: What objective proof will I have that these treatments are doing what's intended as opposed to any ''placebo effect''." This is such a common worry, either for people considering the use of neurofeedback or from other professionals that know very little, if anything, about neurofeedback that it seemed a good idea to share part of my answer with all my readers... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

More on Neurofeedback's Brain Training Value

(Note: neurofeedback is a form of biofeedback that measures brain waves and that, according to practitioners, provides good "brain training" for specific clinical conditions). A few weeks ago Dr. David Rabiner wrote a great post on How Strong is the Research Support for Neurofeedback in Attention Deficits?, concluding that - "It is for these reasons that neurofeedback is understandably regarded as an unproven treatment approach for ADHD at this time by many ADHD researchers. - However, these studies do provide a solid basis for suggesting that if parents choose to pursue neurofeedback for their child, there is a reasonable chance that their child will benefit even though we can't be sure that it is the specific EEG training that is responsible for the benefits. Thus, althoug...

Encephalon: Briefing the Next US President on 24 Neuroscience and Psychology Issues

Dear Mr or Mrs Next US President, We are glad to welcome you to our blog carnival. After a short hiatus, Encephalon is back and gathering steam. We have prepared this "revival" edition just for you, so you can be well informed and impress us all during the upcoming Sciencedebate 2008. Without further ado, let's proceed to the questions posed by 24 bloggers on neuroscience and psychology issues. We hope they provide, at the very least, good mental stimulation for you and your advisors. Big Questions Do I deserve to vote even if I don't have Free Will? (Marc at Neuroscientifically Challenged). If culture sculpts our brains, what can our brains do to refine our culture first? (Stephanie at Brains On Purpose). Is God more than a flying brain? (Jessica at bioephemera). Is Your brain r...

Why Haven't I Heard of Neurofeedback Before?

I get this question -- Why haven't I heard of neurofeedback before? Why didn't anyone tell me? -- all the time from my clients and people calling or writing to me to find out more about neurofeedback. The really frustrated ones are the individuals who have worked with me to decrease their migraines, stop panic attacks, stabilize their mood and who want to know why their physician never told them about this option. I never have very good answers for them. Today I read an article -- (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Encephalon: Briefing the Next US President on 23 Neuroscience and Psychology Issues

Dear Mr or Mrs Next US President, We are glad to welcome you to our blog carnival. After a short hiatus, Encephalon is back gathering steam. We have prepared this "revival" edition just for you, so you can be well informed and impress us all during the upcoming Sciencedebate 2008. Without further ado, let's proceed to the questions posed by 23 bloggers on neuroscience and psychology issues. We hope they provide, at the very least, good mental stimulation for you and your advisors. Big Questions Do I deserve to vote even if I don't have Free Will? (Marc at Neuroscientifically Challenged). If culture sculpts our brains, what can our brains do to refine our culture first? (Stephanie at Brains On Purpose). Is God more than a flying brain? (Jessica at bioephemera). Is Your brain reall...

Quotes for Neurofeedback: What Happens When Your Brain Changes?

Everything has its own place and function. That applies to people, although many don't seem to realize it, stuck as they are in the wrong job, the wrong marriage, or the wrong house. When you know and respect your Inner Nature, you know where you belong. You also know where you don't belong. Benjamin Hoff from  the The Tao of PoohI love this quote because it so nicely describes what I see happening with people when I work with them using nonlinear neurofeedback.They may start off thinking that the Problem is their health condition, or their relationships, or their mood, or‚€¶whatever.But as they work, they start to feel a renewed Connection with themselves and it gets harder and harder to do things that don't respect that Inner Nature, as Hoff says. So they just naturally sta...

Brain Aerobics to Slow Panic Buttons

According to today’s Tribune, people who suffer from anxiety – or worry too much at work, find new answers in neurofeedback. It’s really like aerobics for the brain … or mental exercise … that shifts brain-wave patterns.In order to normalize brain waves … people attach electrodes link to the scalp and to a computer. By focusing your mind, you move waves produced by the brain's electrical activity – seen on the computer monitor.Dr. Kyle R. Bonesteel, assistant professor of neurology at Loyola University Medical Center and director of Neurohealth Associates, said … "Conscious control becomes unconscious control as a result of positively reinforced repetition. The brain learns to regulate itself."Neurofeedback treatments t...

Navigating the Brain: Lessons from the Hawaiian Navigators

I was watching a program on the native navigators from the Hawaiian Islands some time ago (and it is a stunning place. Now on my list of places to visit. As I understood it, these navigators actually used a process very related to the brain‚€™s functioning and why our brain and CARE works: 1) They learned the patterns of waves in and from different directions and destinations so they could recognize each one. ... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

The Beauty of the Brain: Brain Painting with EEG - Updated

I've come across a site with the most gorgeous images of brain activity I've ever seen. And these aren't just inspired works of art, they are actually images derived from EEG activity. Here's just a couple to inspire you to go and look at more.... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Using movement imagery and electromyography-triggered feedback in stroke rehabilitation

CONCLUSIONS: EMG-triggered feedback stimulation did not lead to more arm-hand function improvement relative to conventional electrostimulation. However, in contrast to many clinical reports, a significant improvement was still observed in both groups nine months after treatment ceased. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

A brain-computer interface with vibrotactile biofeedback for haptic information

CONCLUSIONS: Subjects are able to control the BCI using only vibrotactile feedback with an average accuracy of 56% and as high as 72%. These accuracies are significantly higher than the 15% predicted by random chance if the subject had no voluntary control of their Mu-rhythm. The results of this study demonstrate that vibrotactile feedback is an effective biofeedback modality to operate a BCI using motor imagery. In addition, the study shows that placement of the vibrotactile stimulation on the biceps ipsilateral or contralateral to the motor imagery introduces a significant bias in the BCI accuracy. This bias is consistent with a drop in performance generated by stimulation of the contralateral limb. Users demonstrated the capability to overcome this bias with training. (Source: Positive ...

Interactive Multimodal Biofeedback System for Neurorehabilitation

This report explores the new concept and alternative designs of multimedia based biofeedback systems. In this system, the new interactive multimodal environment was constructed with abstract presentation of movement parameters. Scenery images or pictures and their clarity and orientation are used to reflect the arm movement and relative position to the target instead of the animated arm. The multiple biofeedback parameters were classified into different hierarchical levels w.r.t. importance of each movement parameter to performance. A new quantified measurement for these parameters were developed to assess the patient's performance both real-time and offline. These parameters were represented by combined visual and auditory presentations with various distinct music instruments. Overall, th...

Effects of electromyography biofeedback-assisted relaxation on pain in patients with advanced cancer

This study examined the effect of electromyography (EMG) biofeedback-assisted relaxation on cancer-related pain in advanced cancer patients. We hypothesized that changes in EMG activity in frontal muscles underlie the efficacy of EMG biofeedback-assisted relaxation. This was a randomized control study. The experimental group (n = 12) received 6 EMG biofeedback-assisted relaxation sessions over a 4-week period, whereas the control group (n = 12) received conventional care. The primary efficacy measure was the level of pain, measured by the Brief Pain Inventory. Findings from this study show that relaxation training supplemented with visual and auditory EMG biofeedback signals is effective in reducing cancer-related pain in advanced cancer patients, possibly through a mechanism of attenuatio...

The Beauty of the Brain: Brain Painting with EEG

I've come across a site with the most gorgeous images of brain activity I've ever seen. And these aren't just inspired works of art, they are actually images derived from EEG activity. Here's just a couple to inspire you to go and look at more.... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Brain Tales: Stacy's Story of Epilepsy and Neurofeedback

I received an email the other day from Bernard Ertl, the creator and moderator of the Coping with Epilepsy website and forum. When I had a chance to visit his site and read about the experiences he and his wife, Stacy, have had with neurofeedback, I knew I wanted them to share some of their story with my readers. I often get requests from folks who find my website, Brain and Health or blog to share what "typically" happens when someone receives neurofeedback training. I'm not allowed by my professional regulations to ask my own clients to share, so when I find someone who is willing to share their story, I really want you to be able to hear it from their mouth (keyboard?). Even though there really isn't one "typical" pattern, I know it helps to hear about what others have experienced. S...

Just for Fun: The Butterfly Effect and Brain Symptoms

Here is an fun little video of 30 seconds. So, what does this have to do with the brain?Well, although this is intended to be an amusing video, it is a fun explanation of a principle of the physics of nonlinear systems -- what is popularly called the "butterfly effect". That sounded like a bit a mouthful, so let's back up just a bit... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Controlled evaluation of a neurofeedback training in ADHD children

CONCLUSIONS: There is a specific training effect of neurofeedback of slow cortical potentials due to enhanced cortical control. However, non-specific factors, such as parental support, may also contribute to the positive behavioural effects induced by the neurofeedback training. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Cortical activation changes induced by visual biofeedback tracking training in chronic stroke patients

Conclusions: We demonstrated that cortical activation changes occurred with gait function improvement in chronic stroke patients throughout the 4-week VBTT program. It seems that the cortical reorganization was induced by VBTT. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Video on Neurofeedback for Peak Performance

I came across this 5 minute video of Rae Tattenbaum talking about optimal performance coaching and the use of neurofeedback. I thought you might enjoy it as it shows what the process of neurofeedback using the CARE model looks like and talks about the importance of learning to be Present to our own experiences in order to be in Flow more of the time. (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Direct instrumental conditioning of neural activity using fMRI feedback

Direct instrumental conditioning of neural activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging-derived reward feedback. J Neurosci. 2007 Jul 11;27(28):7498-507 Authors: Bray S, Shimojo S, O'Doherty JP Successful learning is often contingent on feedback. In instrumental conditioning, an animal or human learns to perform specific responses to obtain reward. Instrumental conditioning is often used by behavioral psychologists to train an animal (or human) to produce a desired behavior. Shaping involves reinforcing those behaviors, which in a stepwise manner are successively closer to the desired behavior until the desired behavior is reached. Here, we aimed to extend this traditional approach to directly shape neural activity instead of overt behavior. To achieve this, we scanned 22 human sub...

EEG biofeedback in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

Authors: Friel PN Electroencephalogram (EEG) biofeedback, also known as neurofeedback, is a promising alternative treatment for patients with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (AD/HD). EEG biofeedback therapy rewards scalp EEG frequencies that are associated with relaxed attention, and suppresses frequencies associated with under- or over-arousal. In large-scale clinical trials, the efficacy of EEG biofeedback for AD/HD is comparable to that of stimulant medications. Many different EEG biofeedback protocols for AD/HD are available. Single-channel protocols developed by Lubar and interhemispheric protocols developed by the Othmers are widely practiced and supported by large-scale clinical studies. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Rogue Waves: The Ocean of the Brain

I came across a wonderful article that shows what happens in the ocean when rogue "monster" waves appear and capsize ships. What makes it wonderful and why am I writing about it here --- on a blog about the brain and neurofeedback? You may not see a connection between rogue waves on the ocean and what happens in the brain -- or why that matters for our lives. Good question. I hope by the end of my article you'll see why I was so delighted to come across this story as a teaching tool about the brain and how neurofeedback can work. (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Vipassana and Neurofeedback

I came across this YouTube video called "The Simple Path" -- a lecture by S.N. Goenka. It is part of series of broadcasts on Vipassana meditation, also called mindfulness meditation -- "seeing things as they really are". What caught my attention in his talk was the notion of working at deep levels in Vipassana meditation vs making surface changes in some other meditative techniques. It brought to mind the kinds of techniques people are often initially fascinated by when they start exploring ways of training their brain for better performance. These techniques may include... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

The effects of neurofeedback training in the cognitive division of the anterior cingulate gyrus

This study examines the efficacy of neurofeedback training in the cognitive division of the anterior cingulate gyrus and describes its relationship with cortical regions known to be involved in executive functions. This study was conducted with eight non-clinical students, four male and four female, with a mean age of twenty-two. Learning occurred in the ACcd at significant levels over sessions and in the anterior regions that receive projections from the AC. There appears to be a multidimensional executive circuit that increases in the same frequency in apparent synchrony with the AC and it may be possible to train this sub-cortical region using LNFB. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Are complex psychotherapies more effective than biofeedback, progressive muscle relaxation, or both

Authors: Stevens SE, Hynan MT, Allen M, Braun MM, McCart MR A meta-analysis of 26 studies was conducted to assess whether more complex forms of psychotherapy would be superior to control treatments of either biofeedback, progressive muscle relaxation, or both. Consistent with hypotheses, more complex treatments provided a small, significant improvement over biofeedback and progressive muscle relaxation (r = .09). A subset of the more complex behavioral treatments accounted for most of this small incremental effectiveness of more complex treatments (r = .15). Possible sources of this incremental effectiveness are discussed. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Brain potentials associated with outcome expectation and outcome evaluation

This study investigated whether feedback-related negativity can be elicited by a randomly assigned cue indicating potential monetary loss. The expected loss or win can be materialized or averted depending on participants' performance in a subsequent game. Compared with the win cue, the loss cue elicited a weak but significant feedback-related negativity-like effect. It is suggested that the anterior cingulate cortex, which generates feedback-related negativity, may function as a pre-warning system that alerts the brain to get ready for future events. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

Neurofeedback - train your brain to train behaviour

CONCLUSIONS: There is growing evidence for NF as a valuable treatment module in neuropsychiatric disorders. Further, controlled studies are necessary to establish clinical efficacy and effectiveness and to learn more about the mechanisms underlying successful training. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

EEG neurofeedback for cognitive enhancement in the elderly

EEG neurofeedback: a brief overview and an example of peak alpha frequency training for cognitive enhancement in the elderly. Clin Neuropsychol. 2007 Jan;21(1):110-29 Authors: Angelakis E, Stathopoulou S, Frymiare JL, Green DL, Lubar JF, Kounios J Neurofeedback (NF) is an electroencephalographic (EEG) biofeedback technique for training individuals to alter their brain activity via operant conditioning. Research has shown that NF helps reduce symptoms of several neurological and psychiatric disorders, with ongoing research currently investigating applications to other disorders and to the enhancement of non-disordered cognition. The present article briefly reviews the fundamentals and current status of NF therapy and research and illustrates the basic approach with an interim report on a pi...

Neurofeedback for Children with ADHD

This study addresses previous methodological shortcomings while comparing a neurofeedback-training of Theta-Beta frequencies and training of slow cortical potentials (SCPs). The study aimed at answering (a) whether patients were able to demonstrate learning of cortical self-regulation, (b) if treatment leads to an improvement in cognition and behavior and (c) if the two experimental groups differ in cognitive and behavioral outcome variables. SCP participants were trained to produce positive and negative SCP-shifts while the Theta/Beta participants were trained to suppress Theta (4-8 Hz) while increasing Beta (12-20 Hz). Participants were blind to group assignment. Assessment included potentially confounding variables. Each group was comprised of 19 children with ADHD (aged 8-13 years). Th...

Heart Rate Variability Biofeedback for the Treatment of Major Depression

Conclusions: HRV biofeedback appears to be a useful adjunctive treatment for the treatment of MDD, associated with large acute increases in HRV and some chronic increases, suggesting increased cardiovagal activity. It is possible that regular exercise of homeostatic reflexes helps depression even when changes in baseline HRV are smaller. A randomized controlled trial is warranted. (Source: Positive Technology Journal)

More on Migraines and Neurofeedback on ABC News

Well, I'm impressed. Dr. Sarvenaz Zand, a physician wrote an article for ABC News about "Treating Migraines Without Painkillers" -- and there are biofeedback and neurofeedback -- front and centre! How well does it work? According to Dr. Barry Schwartz, director of the Headache Center in New Orleans, about 85 percent to 90 percent of patients with chronic headaches respond positively to biofeedback. "Biofeedback also serves as an excellent bridge in assisting patients wean off medications," he said. Of course, I do have a few thoughts about his presentation of neurofeedback... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Neurofeedback as a Tool for Personal Evolution

I've discovered an interesting blog by Rick Cockrum called Shards of Consciousness: Explorations in Personal Development . He writes about disliking the biological approaches to human life, but I hope he won't mind my comments on his post. This is an older article from his blog, but I like some of the things he had to say and I wanted to elaborate a bit on why. I've extracted some of the bits that got my attention: (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Mindball

title Mindballdescription Neurofeedback tabletop ball game. "Mindball¬ģ is an exciting and audience friendly game where the audience can follow the game both by watching the ball on the table and the diagram on the monitor as well as watching the more or less relaxed faces of the players." [Staring at blank faces sounds very exciting.]producer Interaktive Productlinefeaturing a small white ballformat wmvdate 2006length 00:00:51 link http://www.i-p.se/index.aspx?page=mindball&mId=1 direct video link http://www.i-p.se/doc%5CIPMB512K.wmvanother video http://www.i-p.se/doc%5CMindball%20TM%204,7MB%20350Kbits.wmvVia Mind Hacks.Tags: webcast brain neurofeedback eeg (Source: Channel N)

Diagnosis and Treatment: Does it Add to Neurofeedback?

In previous articles, I've shared my distinction between neurofeedback training and "neurotherapy" treatment. I do training, not treatment. What's the difference and why does it matter?, you might ask. The difference between training and treatment is diagnosis. (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Menopause: It's in Your Head

Not all in your head of course. But it's there.... Surging hormones...dysregulation (or at least a "re-setting" of the system)... And if you've experienced menopause and its hot flashes, you know you feel like your brain isn't functioning on all cyclinders. (Many women say the same thing about being pregnant, but that's a little different story than this one.) I find menopause fascinating from a neurofeedback perspective. Let me share with you an "inside" view of the brain during hot flashes and you'll see what I mean about menopause being firmly in your head! (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Review of the emWave: The em-What??

I haven't really talked on my blog about the emWave personal trainer recently released by the HeartMath Institute. It's handy little device that you can use to practice heart coherence without having to have a computer on and that lets you wander as you practice. I have been using it with my clients and they have found it a useful addition to training sessions. So much so, that several have asked to purchase the extras I have for use in group classes. So what's all the buzz about? I recently saw a great review of the emWave personal heart coherence training tool on a The Gadgeteer. This is wonderful review of the emWave with great pictures and a quick video so you can see its use. The one comment I want to make in clarification is... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Brain Tales: Starting HEG neurofeedback

There you are....wearing a tiny infrared camera on your head, intently watching a screen with a readout of the temperature of your brain, trying to make it go up. You're hoping it will help your migraines melt, your panic attacks retreat, your attention focus, or your mood stabilize in a good place. But what does it actually Feel Like? (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

The Heart of Neurofeedback

What does the heart have to do with neurofeedback? When most people understand the term "neuro", they think neurologist, neurology, neurosurgery...i.e., related to the nervous system and especially the brain and spinal cord (otherwise known as the central nervous system). What does the heart have to do with nervous systems?? (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

How Quickly does Change Happen?

I often am asked about what to expect when people are thinking about or starting neurofeedback training. "How fast does change happen?" and "How soon will I start to notice changes?" are the most frequent questions. I totally understand why people want an answer to this question. Unfortunately, I have to give that all-time number one frustrating answer: "It depends." But I have thought of a metaphor that I think helps to explain why I can't predict what change will be like for any one person. Let me know if this makes sense to you... (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Do You Need to Tolerate Migraines?

Sydney got migraines. Serious migraines. Every day. Sometimes she would get a migraine shortly after getting up and it would last until she went to bed that night.You may know what that's like. ... Sydney worked with me using a neurofeedback technique called passive infrared hemoencephalography or pirHEG, for short. (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)

Why does Neurofeedback Work?

"I don't get it", I can hear you thinking. "How can this CARE approach to neurofeedback possibly work? I'm just sitting watching a screen and listening to music and my brain changes? How can that happen?" (Source: Neurofeedback on the Brain)