What is Neurofeedback?


Neurofeedback is also known as "EEG Biofeedback" as it is based on the brain's electrical activity, the electroencephalogram (EEG)*. It is a painless, non-invasive method which helps people to modify their brainwave activity to treat attention (and hyperactivity) deficits, improve cognitive function, and relieve anxiety and depression, for example*. This can result in a sustained decline of symptoms as well as significant long-term improvements in behaviour and performance.

Neuroscience continues to demonstrate that the brain is capable of enormous change or plasticity. Neurofeedback is direct (re-)training or normalising of brain function. Using neurofeedback, an individual can increase their ability to regulate their own brain activity, teaching the brain to improve itself (to maintain more optimal brainwave function), and reduce maladaptive brainwave patterns. Essentially, the technique trains the brain to regulate and adjust itself to function more efficiently. This research-supported method is a gradual learning process, but one that does not involve medication.

Normally, it is not possible to influence our brainwave patterns because we lack awareness of them. However, neurofeedback uses sophisticated technology whereby electrodes attached to the scalp convey discernable information about the working brain to the computer in real-time. If we are made aware of momentary increases and decreases in brain activity a few milliseconds after they occur (via feedback in the form of sounds or video-game performance), we are subsequently able to alter brain activity (using operant conditioning principles). As in many areas of life, when an individual gets clear and immediate feedback about how they are doing, they are able to improve performance.

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