What is EEG Neurofeedback?
EEG neurofeedback is a non-medicinal, reward-based system to exercise the brain. The brain should present a healthy combination of high and low frequency brain waves to work at its best. More specifically, when you sleep, your brain should produce a higher amount of low-frequency waves.
If you are being chased by a lion, you will produce high-frequency waves. Sometimes the brain generates an excessive amount of high or low-frequency activity, regardless of circumstances. Having your brain tuned on the wrong frequencies can lead to serious problems one is unable to control. Typical examples are insomnia, epilepsy, or ADHD.
EEG neurofeedback, a form of biofeedback, is a technique used to gain control over brain activity to self-regulate the frequency of the brain waves. It is a non-invasive treatment that seeks to address the source of unwanted symptoms.
How does EEG Neurofeedback work?
All neurofeedback methods include EEG sensors that monitor brain waves, and a computer or mobile phone to process the data in order to provide feedback to the user. This feedback may involve different types of stimuli, such as listening to music, watching a video, sensing vibrations or playing games. The stimuli (music, video, vibration, and games) are only provided when the amount of high and low-frequency brain activity is within desired values. Sensing the stimuli acts as a reward for the brain. When the frequencies of brain activity are out of balance, the users do not receive any reward feedback, so they are notified that their brain activity is not optimal. During a neurofeedback training program, your brain learns from and changes based on this feedback. This leads to lasting structural changes in the brain. The brain is then able to operate more consistently in a balanced frequency range and patients may be relieved from their disease symptoms.
The device developed by Drowzee uses neurofeedback to guide insomnia patients towards a brain activity pattern that is closer to that of healthy sleepers.
How does Neurofeedback help?
Neurofeedback is used to help with many conditions such as: ADHD and ADD, stress disorders, anxiety, panic attacks, Aspergers, depression, headaches, migraines, concussion, some types of memory problems and sleep problems. It has been classified as an effective treatment by the American Psychological Association (Arns & Kenemans, 2014; Arns, DeRidder, Strehl, Breteler & Coenen, 2009).