Feeling Depressed? Neurofeedback Can Help
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, anyone experiencing some of the following symptoms consistently for at least two weeks may be suffering from depression:
- Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
• Feelings of hopelessness, or pessimism
• Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
• Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities
• Decreased energy or fatigue
• Moving or talking more slowly
• Feeling restless or having trouble sitting still
• Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
• Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
• Appetite and/or weight changes
• Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
• Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment
Traditionally, depression has been treated with therapy and medication. Therapy, while helpful, is not always effective and can last years. Medications may provide immediate relief, but do help cure the problem and can have undesirable side effects. More and more people are turning to alternative solutions like neurofeedback which can offer permanent results without the side effects or long term care.
How Does Neurofeedback treat Depression?
Neurofeedback specifically targets the specific areas of the brain that trigger depression. Addressing the root cause of the problem. Over multiple sessions, neurofeedback will non-invasively modify brain patterns that are affiliated with depression. We can track progress using qEEG brain scans to accurately monitor progress. Neurofeedback works through a process called neuroplasticity, or the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life.
In one case study, patients who were diagnosed with depression completed 27 sessions of neurofeedback. After completing neurofeedback, those originally diagnosed as having depression showed a more normalized qEEG brain map after multiple sessions and did not display the markers for depression. And they maintained their normal scores after a 5 year follow up.
According to this study, neurofeedback patients were better able to control and regulate their emotions, and the authors of the study also found that the specific depression protocol they used may also help facilitate left frontal lobe function. These changes were also maintained over time.
There are hundred more studies on neurofeedback and depression with positive results available at www.nimh.nih.gov.
Posted In: Neurofeedback