Saturday, January 31, 2015

Neurofeedback now available in Malaysia

Yes, you can now experience the wonder of clinical neurofeedback training in Malaysia!

Currently, I am practicing the clinical neurofeedback training in the Hypnosis Integrative Hub @ Life Care Diagnostic Medical Centre at Bangsar South (KL). I am a Singapore trained neurofeedback (Master Trainer Level) practitioner with many years of experience. Clinical Neurofeedback/EEG biofeedback deals with your subconscious mind and it is very effective in changing one's behavior, attention, concentration, stress arousal and emotion state. Contact me if you would like to know more about it.

Neurofeedback is a scientifically-based treatment for a variety of problems that result from a dysregulated nervous system. There have been hundreds (or more) of research studies to prove the effectiveness of Neurofeedback in the last 45 years. Recent meta analyses document the effectiveness of Neurofeedback in the treatment of ADHD (Arns, de Ridder, Strehl, Breteler, and Coenen, 2009). In 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics rated Neurofeedback/ Biofeedback is rated as a Level 1 intervention for ADHD – the same as medication.

What is Neurofeedback?

Neurofeedback is direct training of brain function, by which the brain learns to function more efficiently. We observe the brain in action from moment to moment. We show that information back to the person. And we reward the brain for changing its own activity to more appropriate patterns. This is a gradual learning process. It applies to any aspect of brain function that we can measure. Neurofeedback is also called EEG Biofeedback, because it is based on electrical brain activity, the electroencephalogram, or EEG. Neurofeedback is training in self-regulation. It is simply biofeedback applied to the brain directly. Self-regulation is a necessary part of good brain function. Self-regulation training allows the system (the central nervous system) to function better.
Neurofeedback addresses problems of brain disregulation. These happen to be numerous. They include the anxiety-depression spectrum, attention deficits, behavior disorders, various sleep disorders, headaches and migraines, PMS and emotional disturbances. It is also useful for organic brain conditions such as seizures, the autism spectrum, and cerebral palsy.

Is Neurofeedback a Cure?

In the case of organic brain disorders, it can only be a matter of getting the brain to function better rather than of curing the condition. When it comes to problems of disregulation, we would say that there is not a disease to be cured. Where disregulation is the problem, self-regulation may very well be the remedy. But again the word "cure" would not apply.

What Conditions Can it Help?

Many children have sleep problems that can be helped such as Bed wetting, Sleep walking, sleep talking, Teeth grinding, Nightmares, Night terrors.
We can also be helpful with many of the problems of adolescence including Drug abuse, Suicidal behavior, Anxiety and depression.
We can also help to maintain good brain function as people get older. The good news is that almost any brain, regardless of its level of function, can be trained to function better.

Training effects last?

If the problem being addressed is one of brain disregulation, then the answer is yes, and that covers a lot of ground. Neurofeedback involves learning by the brain and if that brings order out of disorder, the brain will continue to use its new capabilities, and thus reinforce them.
Matters are different when we are dealing with degenerative conditions like Parkinson's or the dementias, or when we are working against continuing insults to the system, as may be the case in the autism spectrum. In such cases the training needs to be continued at some level over time. Allergic susceptibilities and food intolerances make it more difficult to hold the gains. Poor digestive function will pose a problem, as does poor nutrition. A child living in a toxic environment (in either the physical or the psychological sense) will have more difficulty retaining good function.

Your initial assessment costs RM190 only. 

Report will be given right after your consultation session. 

No worries, you won't be labelled in our centre. 

Suggestions will be offered as a starting point for training.

Further reading: 

[News on The Washington Post By Arlene Karidis 2015 January 19 ]

Therapists are using neurofeedback to treat ADHD, PTSD and other conditions

In September 2013, Chris Gardner went from kicking and spinning as a black belt in taekwondo to being locked in a world where he could not follow conversations — or even walk his dog. The 58-year-old Vienna, Va., resident had just had brain surgery to remove a large tumor, and the operation affected his mobility and cognition.
After nine months of physical and occupational therapy, he’d made little progress. So he tried neurofeedback, hoping this controversial treatment would improve his balance and mental processes.
Neurofeedback — a type of biofeedback — uses movies, video games, computers and other tools to help individuals regulate their brain waves. A patient might watch a movie, for example, while hooked to sensors that send data to a computer. A therapist, following the brain activity on a monitor, programs the computer to stop the movie if an abnormal number of fast or slow brain waves is detected or if the brain waves are erratic, moving rapidly from fast to slow waves.
The stop-and-start feedback, repeated over and over in numerous sessions, seems to yield more-normal brain waves. Researchers who endorse the technique say they don’t know exactly how it works but they say the changes in brain waves result in improved ability to focus and relax.
Better focus and relaxation can seemingly help improve or eliminate such conditions as migraines (imbalanced brain waves are associated with certain symptoms like pain) and anxiety.

Neurofeedback, which is also used for post-traumatic stress disorder and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, has been around since the 1960s. Some research has found it promising. Other studies have been inconclusive, and some have shown no positive outcomes.
The most solid data concern ADHD, especially a recent trial involving 104 children published in March in the Journal of Pediatrics. Those who received neurofeedback had improvements in attention and impulse control, while those who did not receive the therapy did not. These improvements persisted after six months. The authors concluded that neurofeedback may be a “promising attention training treatment for children with ADHD.”
Gardner had read that the technique could aid in recovery from brain injuries.
“I was skeptical. But I was desperate. I felt like I was wrapped in miles of cotton and could not reach through it to touch or feel anything,” said Gardner, an electronic technology consultant. His doctor was projecting a two-to-three-year recovery period, based on Gardner’s slow progress nine months after surgery.

By his ninth neurofeedback session, he was driving, taking power walks and working from home.
Neurofeedback treatments vary. In Gardner’s case, he sat in a chair while tiny, pulsed signals were sent to his brain. Research suggests that these signals enable the brain to revive its communication channels, which can become impaired after a brain injury.
“I couldn’t feel anything” while the treatments were underway, Gardner said. “I just sat there with my eyes closed. My therapist explained that the pulses basically reboot the brain.”
He has just completed the last of 10 treatments. “I am not 100 percent. I probably won’t stand on my head or get on a roller coaster. But I can do almost everything I couldn’t do before,” said Gardner, who’s back to his martial arts.
“Do most people become totally normal? No. But they improve,” said Michael Sitar, a Bethesda psychologist certified in neurofeedback. He uses it to treat depression, ADHD, chronic pain and some other conditions.
“I find [that] people with focus problems can switch tasks easier. Kids who repeat themselves and who are emotionally labile become calmer and don’t repeat as much,” Sitar said. “With some complicated cases, like bipolar disorder, people may get by on less medication. Though less common, there are documented cases of nonverbal people who become verbal.”
Like riding a bike
Deborah Stokes, an Alexandria psychologist, compares neurofeedback to riding a bike: It’s non-conscious learning, based on the feedback, that, with repetition, can be long-lasting, she said.
“We don’t know exactly how neurofeedback works,” she said. “It’s a process where if clients get out of their own way, they relax. Over time, they get the desired brain pattern, feel calm and function better. This encourages them to stay with it.” Her team sees 30 patients a week.
Thomas Nicklin, whose family was living in Alexandria, saw Stokes for debilitating migraines. A year and a half after beginning a drug regimen prescribed by a neurologist, he was not getting better.
Nicklin, a teenager who was in boarding school, did 45 neurofeedback sessions over three months last year.
“Over time, Thomas went from three or four blinding migraines a week, vomiting and daily pain, to no symptoms,” said his mother, Pat Nicklin.

Silver Spring psychologist Robb Mapou is among the skeptics.
“I have not seen enough well-controlled, rigorous studies in most conditions for which it is recommended to show, definitively, that neurofeedback is effective. I also think there are other therapeutic factors that can contribute to an individual’s outcome, such as discussing their problems with a therapist.”
Michelle Harris-Love, a neuroscience researcher at the MedStar National Rehabilitation Network in Washington, agrees.
“I believe it is applied in some situations where we do not have enough information on the cause of a disorder or how recovery happens,” she said.
But Rex Cannon, past president of the International Society for Neurofeedback and Research, based in McLean, Va., cited nearly 200 peer-reviewed published articles that indicate neurofeedback’s effectiveness. This includes a meta-analysis of 10 studies on epilepsy patients: Although they had not responded to medications, they had a significant reduction in seizures after neurofeedback treatment. And a study on migraine patientsreported, “Neurofeedback appears to be dramatically effective in abolishing or significantly reducing migraine frequency in the great majority of patients.”
Patients usually have sessions two or three times a week, for a total of 10 to 40. Most sessions are 30 to 60 minutes long. They can be expensive — from $50 to $130 each. Some insurance policies cover neurofeedback, depending on the diagnosis.
Mary Lee Esty, a Bethesda clinical social worker, has a small study underway treating veterans with PTSD. In an earlier study of seven veterans who used neurofeedback, she reported, the results were promising.
“These people [in the early study] initially had minimal function. They could not work, and many attempted suicide,” she said. “One is getting a PhD now. One has a full scholarship when he could not read after his head injury. All of them are doing well.”
Other studies describe results of the therapy in a similar way, as promising but requiring further examination.
Esty, who received a National Institutes of Health grant for an earlier study of brain-injured patients, has used neurofeedback to treat more than 2,500 people, mainly with brain injuries or PTSD. In her most recent and still ongoing study, she collaborates with the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, which gives participants in her program post-treatment evaluations.
“I am in this collaboration because I want to get the hard data out there,” Esty said.
Karidis is a freelance writer.


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