NEUROFEEDBACK is brain exercise. The clinician observes your brain in action from moment to moment by monitoring your brain waves. You see your brain activity and the clinician helps you to change it by rewarding shifts toward a more appropriate and stable brain state. It is a gradual learning process, but with this feedback, the brain can learn to function more efficiently.
Neurofeedback is also called EEG biofeedback. The electroencephalogram (EEG) is another name for the brain wave recordings and, in this context, biofeedback refers to the process by which you learn to change your brain waves and thereby change your control of brain states.
Neurofeedback is a painless, non-invasive, learning strategy that enables a person to alter their brain waves in order to improve attention, reduce impulsivity, and to control hyperactive behaviors. It is based on the Basic Principles of Operant Condition and Learning Theory.
Neurofeedback is based on the EEG. The user is provided with real time feedback on brainwave activity, when the desired brain activity is achieved a positive “reward” feedback is given to the individual, all the while blocking or inhibiting the undesired brain wave activity. Like the acquisition of any skill this is a gradual learning process. It applies to any aspect of brain function that we can measure.
Brainwave activity is measured with an EEG. The EEG Biofeedback equipment is connected to the individual with sensors that are placed on the scalp and ears. The sensors are safe, do not prick or penetrate the skin, and are painless. After adequate connection to the scalp and ears are made, the individual’s brainwave activity can be observed on a computer monitor.
Clients are then taught to play computerized games using their brainwave activity. Changes in client brainwave activity are fed back to the individual through visual and/or auditory information by the computer. One example is a game where clients move a figure through a mazy (similar to the popular pac-man game). The figure does not move because of the client’s motor activity (e.g., pushing a button or moving a stick). Instead, the figure moves whenever the client produces specific brainwave patterns. When desired levels of brainwave activity occur, the individual is reinforced, because the figure moves through the maze.
By this method, clients learn to change brainwave activity. Clients also practice maintaining learned brainwave states when engaged in school or work related tasks (e.g., reading, writing,). This will help them use what they learning in Neurofeedback in their daily activities.
When you give the brain information about itself, it has an enormous capacity for change. Neurofeedback makes the information available to the brain almost instantly and asks it to make adjustments during training. The brain can respond rapidly. Changes in the EEG due to feedback tend to correlate with improved behavior, mood, affect regulation and attention. Change in EEG behavior is a direct reflection of changes in neuronal firing. EEG training is thought to improve activation, inhibition, and cortical ability, while impacting on regulatory mechanisms.
HEALTHY BRAIN TRAINING as part of CHILDREN’S THERAPY SERVICE is provided only by a trained and licensed clinician. Linda Kramer, OTR/L is uniquely qualified not only through her training in the use of the EEG Neurofeedback approach but also in her clinical experience as an Occupational Therapist who has 29 years of pediatric experience and over 20 years of specialization and certification in Sensory Integration. Many children with Sensory Processing and Integration Disorders also experience difficulty with attention, organization as well as emotional control including anxiety, depression, tics and oppositional behaviors. During the EEG session, Linda uses her background in Sensory Integration and incorporates sensory experiences as needed in order to optimize the effectiveness of the session. Linda is additionally joined in providing this therapy with her husband, Otto S. Kramer, MD.
For more information on our neurofeedback program please visit: www.eegbraintrain.com.
Brooke has been coming to Children’s Therapy Services for 9 months. She has always received therapy through school due to severe prematurity. But when we decided she would go to a private school, she would no longer receive the services. I was impressed upon meeting Linda as she told us so much more about Brooke and why she needs OT and PT besides her prematurity. We have seen a difference in Brooke’s muscle strength and the strength on her left side. Nora our PT and Jennifer our OT work very well with Brooke and always find ways to make therapy fun. As a toddler, Brooke would run from her therapist’s, but now she enjoys her time at therapy. Thank-you Linda, Nora and Jennifer!
- Andrea - Daughter, 6 y/o