BrainPaint Neurofeedback FAQ
Q: What is neurofeedback?
A: Neurofeedback is a way to train the brain to be in a regulated state. When the brain is in a regulated state it means that it is not hyper-aroused or hypo-aroused, but in an optimal state to process information and respond instead of react. We place sensors on the scalp then use a computer program that mirrors back to the brain when it is in a regulated state through auditory prompts or visual cues. Overtime, the brain learns how to self correct when it is dysregulated. It is like learning how to ride a bike, where with practice and repeated movements, our brain and body develop patterns that are encoded so that when you get back on the bike, it is an automatic response. It is also like the “Hot and Cold” game that children play, where there is a target that they are trying to find based on verbal cues that get them closer to the intended target. Neurofeedback is giving the brain cues to when it has found its regulated target. After 25 sessions, the brain will have received over 75,000 cues of when it is in a regulated state.
Q: What can neurofeedback treat?
A: Any brain dysregulation: ADD, Anxiety, Depression, Sleep, Mood Disorder, Insomnia, PTSD, Addiction, Increase Energy, Relationships, Fears, Trauma, Stress, Autism, Performance, Test Anxiety, Meditation, Brain Injury
Q: How do I begin neurofeedback?
A: Your therapist will have an evaluation session with you that lasts about one hour. You will be asked a series of questions and come up with four areas that you would like to work on. Then you will meet with your Neurofeedback Technician who has entered the evaluation information into the BrainPaint computer, which generates a specific individualized protocol for you. You can schedule your first session after your evaluation. Call Lauren at 760-634-1704 to coordinate your first session.
Q: How many sessions do I need?
A: At least 25 sessions. Each session is about 1 hour.
Q: How often can I do a session?
A: Sessions can be every day and you can do two sessions back to back. The first 5 sessions must be done in a row (every day for 5 days or two sessions back to back for fewer days). The minimum amount of brain training sessions per week is two, but three or more are recommended after your initial 5 consecutive sessions. For the best results, you want to get 25 sessions done in the shortest period of time.
Q: What happens if I miss a week of neurofeedback?
A: Discuss your schedule with Lauren 760-634-1704
Q: When will I start seeing results?
A: Effects can be seen after the first 5-10 sessions, depending on the frequency of brain training. The more sessions you do in a consecutive manner, the faster you will experience results.
Q: How much does it cost?
A: Please call Julieann at 760-846-3234 to discuss options.
Q: What goes on during a session?
A: The neurofeedback technician will place sensors on your scalp and ears in different positions depending on your specific protocol; you can have up to 3 “protocols” per session. Protocols can require “eyes closed” for auditory feedback or “eyes open” for visual feedback. In an “eyes closed” protocol, you will sit back in a comfortable reclining chair for 24 minutes with your eyes closed, listening to audio feedback. In the eyes open protocol, the length of time can range from 3-20 minutes and you will sit at the computer receiving visual and audio feedback, while RIGHT clicking the mouse when you see the color blue on the screen.
Q: What is the computer doing during a session?
A: It is giving your brain auditory and/or visual hints or cues when your brain is in a regulated state. It is constantly adjusting to train your brain to be in a regulated state.
Q: What do the sounds mean?
A: The sounds are simply cues to your brain to get it into a regulated state. Some sounds “up-regulate” and some “down-regulate” the brain depending on what the brain is mirroring back to the computer.
Q: What do the images on the computer mean?
A: They are simply mirroring back the activity in your brain. These images are like a movie of your brain processing.
Q: What does crossover mean?
A: This is when Alpha and Theta meet in the “Regulated Zone” in your brain.
Q: What does the “What is” box mean?
A: “What is” is the regulated state your brain is in and “What isn’t” is when the brain isn’t in a regulated state.
Q: What are Alpha Theta, SMR, and Beta Brainwaves?
A: Alpha Theta stops reactions, SMR slows the brain down and Beta speeds the brain up. So we can think of Brainpaint as a tool that reads what is going on in the brain and then changes the brain’s feedback system to get the brain to “up-regulate”, “down-regulate” or stop reacting to reach the optimal regulated state in the brain.
Q: Are there any negative side effects to neurofeedback?
A: It is possible you may experience some unwanted effects during training. These can show up during the session, such as your heart beating rapidly or feeling sleepy. Or they may show up later in the day, such as fatigue, irritability, difficulty sleeping or a headache. Unwanted effects usually seem related to the instabilities in your nervous system that brought you into Neurofeedback training.