Frequently Asked Questions
  • Sometimes, patients start feeling a positive difference after only three to five sessions of neurofeedback. However, you should beware claims that serious conditions can be resolved with only these many sessions. Expect changes after the first handful of treatments, but don’t have unrealistic expectations because a disorder may cause the brain to be highly resistant to change. A sustained number of sessions are necessary to ensure that the changes have long-term effect.

    Migraines and minor sleep problems may substantially improve after only 15 sessions, but severe disorders, such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, and attention deficit may require 30 to 40 sessions. In cases of PTSD, fibromyalgia, and multiple personality disorder, that number may be over 100 for some patients (though considerably fewer for those who respond more quickly).

    Generally speaking, the decision on how many sessions are needed is always based on the type of disorder, the severity of symptoms, and how long the patient has been experiencing them. Accordingly, your treatment plan will be uniquely designed for you and your specific needs.

  • Conditioned reflexes are learned responses. They are strengthened by use and diminished by disuse. The ultimate goal with Neurofeedback is to cause a profound shift in brain function – a shift that will inhibit old behavior, old habits. The learning process of inhibiting old patterns depends on plasticity – how flexible the brain is when it comes to learning. With little or no trauma involved, the effects of Neurofeedback can be robust.

    Once you learn something, it becomes ingrained in your behavior. When you are guided to a specific frequency range and your brain learns how to stay in that frequency, it will be able to stay there on its own, and continue to improve. After a certain number of sessions, the brain will have learned to adopt a new style of functioning, which then it owns. It will be able to identify a state of mind and replicate it because it owns that new skill and can choose to use it whenever needed, because the new pattern is based on a fair, balanced, and normal distribution of brainwave activity. Follow-up studies in Neurofeedback show that the effects of the therapy continue for up to 30 years.

    The brain is always seeking a state of safety and homeostasis. Whatever it can learn in one session, it will retain that which works best,  and that bit of learning is permanent. It is common to feel more present and aware of surroundings after just a few sessions, but it’s important to stress here that this training is cumulative.

  • Neurofeedback is a non-invasive, pain-free process that you undergo while watching a movie on a computer screen after sensors, or electrodes, are gently positioned on your scalp, as dictated by a “map” of your brain. If, for instance, your Brain Map shows that Alpha activity in your frontal lobes is higher than normal, electrodes are placed on the frontals to coax it down to a normal range. Feedback appears in the form of a game or movie that tells you when you’re responding just right. In psychology, this is called operant conditioning. With neurofeedback, we teach the brain to do what we want it to do; we thereby change brain structure and function through brainwave feedback.

    Our process involves watching a movie or any program on the computer, for 30 minutes or so, while the electrodes relay signals to and from the computer, which follows designated protocols to gently nudge the brain to adopt new, healthier patterns. While images and sounds fade in and out, the brain naturally struggles to correct them by subconsciously making adjustments in activity where the electrodes are placed. When desirable results are achieved, you’re “rewarded” with a clearer picture and sound. These fluctuations, occurring continuously over the session, create a real workout for the brain, which over time learns to stay within these parameters on its own.

    You feel rewarded for your training efforts during a neurofeedback session, and this reward is called reinforcement – a concept of Behaviorism, one of the oldest and best-researched domains in Psychology. We learn how to ride a bicycle in the same way we do neurofeedback: we’re reinforced by our success. During a neurofeedback session the brain re-organizes existing connections and increases the ability to self-regulate, so neurofeedback is essentially a form of learning.

  • Nationwide, neurofeedback sessions last from 30 to 40 minutes each, depending on the modality of the software used. When you’re watching movies, 45 minutes is perfectly acceptable as the length of a session.

  • Two or three times a week is ideal, but depending on the condition being treated, you can have a session every day, so long as you’re responding positively to them.

Before investing in Neurofeedback, get a Brain Map so we can pinpoint what therapy is best for you.