What is neurofeedback?
In a neurofeedback session, electrodes are placed on the head to analyze and record the electrical activity of the brain, using EEG (electroencephalogram). These EEG waves (rhythms) provide information about certain states and cognitive processes in the central nervous system in a very specific way. It is undoubtedly clear that these wave patterns change according to the mental and physical state of the human being. By using visual and/or acoustic feedback, it is possible to change the brainwave activity and thus to achieve an improvement of psychic and physical symptoms/functions. Neurofeedback is an effective and evidence-based treatment.
Important parameters are the amperage and the connectivity that describes the collaboration of the individual areas in the head. The amperage is comparable to a muscle. Just like I can train a muscle, it is the same with the muscle in my head. I can increase the amperage but also decrease if I no longer use these brain muscles. “Connectivity is comparable to a team sport. Imagine your brain is a football team and all players would run involuntarily across the playing field. Each player would only perform and act as a single player, but not pay attention to his teammates. Could they play well and win? Rather not. What should happen if they want to succeed and win? They must respect each other and play with each other. Exactly the same thing takes place in your head. And with neurofeedback I’ll show you how to do it.”
Since the EEG image cannot present any feedback, a screen shows you, for example, a character that moves according to the changes in brain activity. The task of the training person is now, to fly an eagle through certain targets. The method is thus to strengthen a purposeful behavior, which corresponds to a more favorable composition of brain waves. By a special programming of the feedback software, this can be learned by any person, regardless of age. We set up the latest and classic feedback according to the training and the person. We are currently researching further new feedback and treatment techniques. One of the latest techniques is VR biofeedback. VR, or virtual reality, refers to the representation of an environment that is completely computer-generated. Even a normal neurofeedback game is already a kind of virtual reality, but VR is a completely different experience for the patient, because it is based on the use of VR glasses. If your brain can no longer distinguish the difference between reality and virtual reality, the brain will emit hormones and neuropeptides corresponding to the present reality, which provides emotions. The stronger the emotion and experience in these situations are, the faster and deeper it is anchored and stored in the brain.
LORETA neurofeedback is another non-invasive representation and training method of the deep structures of the brain. By using a technical and mathematical highly complex process, it is possible to set precisely the feedback in real time. Using sensors on your scalp, LORETA generates a visual map of your brain’s activity, which shows where the treatment can be concentrated. Thus, for example, it is possible to observe and train deep-lying structures, such as the limbic system (emotions) or the anterior cingulum (attention). Because these deep structures are often the source of dysregulation, this training is usually faster and more intense.
The aim is to teach the brain new skills, to reduce the symptoms and to increase mental and physical resilience.
So far there are only a few therapists in Germany who offer this kind of training method. It is considered as a pioneer for the future of neurofeedback therapy.