Neurofeedback in Wisconsin - Locate a Neurofeedback Provider in Wisconsin

Neurofeedback Training Process...

Neurofeedback training can only be as beneficial as the initial evaluation. Quoting Dr. Daniel Amen, “The brain is the only organ that most of us don't look at before we treat.” Our center offers the Mind-Brain-Body Assessment to locate potential areas of concern for a happier and healthier life.

I. The Mind-Body-Brain Assessment

While the brain’s activity would appear to be the first place to assess when beginning Neurofeedback training, it is actually only one piece of the crucial information needed for Neurofeedback training to be successful. There is a surprisingly complex relationship existing between the mind, the brain and the body, requiring all 3 to cooperate and interact in harmony. In order to get an accurate picture of one’s overall functioning; we need to understand the key role that each of these individual parts play and in turn what each contributes to the overall functioning.

IMPORTANT: In order for Neurofeedback to be most effective it is vital for the mind and the body to exist in a calm and relaxed state!

Mind Assessment: How Thoughts & Emotions impact Brain Activity…
  • Our brain’s functioning allows conscious thought and emotional processing.
  • These thoughts and feeling can spark a stressful or fearful reaction signaling the body to prepare for a situation.
  • While seeing your brain and body actually change in real time on a monitoring screen, one is able to understand how triggers are impacting your functioning.
Physiological (Body) Assessment: How the Body Triggers Brain Activity…
  • The body receives signals from the brain and sends information back again.
  • If the body becomes stuck in a negative or over-activated pattern, then regulating the brain essentially emulates only what the body can achieve.
  • We use a multi-tool approach in helping you identify any road blocks to successful Neurotherapy training. Biofeedback offers the individual a chance to see if his or her body is being overdriven without their conscious awareness.
Brain Assessment: Controlling Your Thoughts, Emotions and Bodily Function…
  • An overactive brain can create an environment where negative thoughts and emotions are constantly fueled. Calming the brain can have a positive impact on mental stability as well as your body’s overall functioning.
  • The body receives an overload of signals creating a never-ending cycle of fatigue, lack of focus, poor sleep, just to name a few.
  • We offer the full qEEG Brain Mapping analysis at The Center for Mind Brain Balance.

Not all “Brain Maps” are Created Equal – Educate Yourself First!

The most important aspect of the Neurofeedback process is the initial assessment. However, not all providers utilize the benefits of the qEEG brain map. Some people rely on subjective symptoms from their clients to determine placement of the sensors for Neurofeedback. However, given that symptoms can overlap, this doesn’t always provide an accurate training platform. Others choose 1 or 2 common sites, where common problems may arise and use these sites as their foundation for creating a protocol.

The qEEG brain map is becoming the gold standard, offering an overview of the entire brain’s function and the connectivity between the sites. Training amplitude at each of the sites is not enough for some. Coherence is the speed in which the sites communicate with one another and this can now be trained on more advanced Neurofeedback systems. The qEEG collects data from the internationally accepted 10-20 sites, which are 19 spots on the brain that are recognized by all in the field. The qEEG provides colorful maps of the brain at each frequency, and allows the clinician a clear path for selecting a particular region of interest as well as what frequencies need to be slowed down or sped up.

The most important aspect of the Neurofeedback process is the initial assessment. However, not all providers utilize the benefits of the qEEG brain map. Some people rely on subjective symptoms from their clients to determine placement of the sensors for Neurofeedback. However, given that symptoms can overlap, this doesn’t always provide an accurate training platform. Others choose 1 or 2 common sites, where common problems may arise and use these sites as their foundation for creating a protocol.

The qEEG brain map is becoming the gold standard, offering an overview of the entire brain’s function and the connectivity between the sites. Training amplitude at each of the sites is not enough for some. Coherence is the speed in which the sites communicate with one another and this can now be trained on more advanced Neurofeedback systems. The qEEG collects data from the internationally accepted 10-20 sites, which are 19 spots on the brain that are recognized by all in the field. The qEEG provides colorful maps of the brain at each frequency, and allows the clinician a clear path for selecting a particular region of interest as well as what frequencies need to be slowed down or sped up.

II. The Training Protocol

Training protocols in Neurofeedback can vary greatly in scope, depth, and reliability based on how they are created. There are two very different approaches to this. First, and more common, the protocol is based upon a client and or patient’s reporting symptoms. Neurofeedback training includes a basic understanding on which sites to train based on symptoms. Some Neurofeedback systems being sold to non-health care providers pride themselves on this “easy to use” approach. However, this isn’t always as simple as it looks because symptoms can overlap. In other words, using this approach can be risky because if somebody has similar symptoms, but different underlying causes for the symptoms, they both will be trained the same. Therefore, basing a treatment approach on symptoms alone for weeks if not months could end up training the wrong areas and costing the client/patient a lot of money!

A more objective and comprehensive approach is to include the subjective symptoms in the overall treatment approach, but to base the Neurofeedback treatment protocol off of the data collected from the qEEG brain mapping analysis. The qEEG measures 19 areas of the outer brain (cortex) and provides a colorful, easy to follow map of the brain. It shows areas of the brain that are over or under-activated, thus prompting the Neurofeedback provider a clear road map of which sites may be the most beneficial to train first. Most providers will also then revisit a client’s and or patient’s symptoms for comparison for any opposing factors.

The protocol may change over the sessions as well. Most providers will revisit the changes every 10 or 12 sessions to make sure they are not over-training a particular area. Thus, another reason to use the qEEG brain mapping as one can have a clear before and after training to illustrate any changes from the Neurofeedback sessions. Protocols can be generated manually or off of highly advanced software such as with Z-score or LORETA Neurofeedback training. Every protocol should first and foremost be looking at the individual’s brainwave imbalances and not using a cookie-cutter approach found in a textbook for best results. However, there are cases when the results from a qEEG brain map analysis do line up in agreement with the suggested protocols based on client symptoms, but it’s always best to have the assurance of the qEEG analysis as a foundation for training.

How to Ensure Neurofeedback Success

In addition to the sessions, proper sleep and nutrition is key to creating positive change. Neurofeedback helps the brain learn how to self regulate, but it needs proper nourishment and energy to function properly. Biofeedback can also be a beneficial tool before sessions to calm oneself before starting neurofeedback. Most clinicians who offer biofeedback and neurofeedback, have the client do at least 5 minutes of heart rate variability training (breathing exercises/training).

Neurofeedback has research backing supporting its noninvasive effectiveness and use in numerous mental disorders, including depression, attention deficit disorder (ADD/ADHD), anxiety, sleep disorders, headaches and migraines, and other emotional issues. It can also be used to help people who have organic brain disorders, such as autism, cerebral palsy and seizures.

The key to successful neurofeedback training is to lower certain brainwave frequencies while promoting other, healthier frequencies. While this sounds difficult, it is done by simple repetitive training while connected to the electrodes. Effective neurofeedback training typically takes anywhere from 15 to 35 sessions. Unlike virtually all other treatment methods available, neurofeedback has no known significant side effects. However, not all people are appropriate candidates for neurofeedback treatment. Approximately 20% of people who try neurofeedback receive no therapeutic benefit.

III. Training Sessions

After a protocol or training plan is established the sessions begin. On average traditional Neurofeedback can take anywhere between 30-60 sessions. Change usually is seen after 10-15 sessions. LORETA or whole head can offer similar if not better results in as little as 20-25 sessions. This is because working the entire brain is faster and more efficient than working a few sites at a time.

Follow up assessment, and mid-session analysis are optional, but extremely important as one can track the progress and/or adjust the protocol as needed during the training sessions.

Potential Barriers with Neurofeedback Training:

  • Medications can interfere with regulating brain function
  • Environmental Stressors – Neurofeedback trains the brain, but can’t make a household calm or a school compatible for someone
  • Highly resistant personality or defiant
  • Irregular session or abruptly stopping Neurofeedback training
  • Not having a solid treatment protocol (no assessment process)
  • Using Neurofeedback to fix a condition that isn’t often worked with
  • Types of equipment – does the machine offer a strong enough approach to the brainwave patterns in question (traditional vs LOREATA Neurofeedback)
  • Competency of Clinician/Provider
  • Flexibility of the Neurofeedback System – some computer programs are not easily changed and have general training programs, and can’t be customized for one’s individual needs
This website is offered as a resource and learning tool for Neurofeedback training & finding a provider in Wisconsin.
Sponsored by The Center for Mind Brain Balance in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin
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