Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy for Parkland
Dr. Guy Annunziata created our system for doctors of chiropractic as an effective, drugless, noninvasive approach to alleviating the symptoms associated with:
- Tension Type Headaches
- Learning Disorders
- Memory Loss
- Chronic Pain
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
In addition to treating the conditions listed above, Bio-Neurofeedback has also been used for:
- Weight Loss Programs
- Peak Performance Training
- Anti-Aging Treatments
Though this technology is quite complex, the training activity is simple, painless, drugless and non-invasive. Surface electrodes are placed on the scalp and brain wave activity is transmitted to the computer software. Auditory and visual feedback is provided instantly, so that the patient sees and hears representations of their brain in action. The patient is instructed to observe the auditory and visual feedback and allow the nervous system to reset itself based on that feedback. As the nervous system reorganizes itself based on this instantaneous information, the patterns begin to normalize.
Over the course of 10 to 20 training sessions, neuroplastic modifications result in the permanent alleviation of the symptoms.
I invite you to take some time to explore this page as well as the rest of our website to see if Bio-Neurofeedback or any of the other services we offer are right for you.
How it Works
Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy provides a unique drugless approach to treating Neurological Dysregulation Syndrome (NDS) that may be associated with the symptoms of many neurological based conditions including ADD/ADHD, Headaches, Migraines, Learning Disorders, Memory Loss Associated with Aging, Overeating or Binge Eating, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Panic/Anxiety Disorders, and Insomnia, just to name a few.
NDS is a condition that results from tension on the nervous system caused by subluxation, poor nutrition, stress, drugs or trauma. This technology and science is based on a training procedure that effectively regulates the nervous system providing proven relief of conditions associated with NSD.
In order to understand how Bio-Neurofeedback therapy works we first need to understand how the brain works. The systems that govern the human brain are the most complex and compact on earth. In order for the brain to function optimally, the parts of the brain must talk to one another constantly. The brain accomplishes this communication by transmitting electrical signals along neurons that connect one area of the brain to another. The electrical signals are expressed as brain waves. Using non-invasive surface electrodes that are placed on the surface of the scalp, our system is able to translate these brainwaves on to a computer screen for observation – It’s like having a window to the brain.Read more…
- Brain Waves: There are four distinct brain wave frequencies
- Beta Waves: Produced when you are awake and engaged in active thought
- Alpha Waves: Produced mostly when you close your eyes and relax.
- Theta Waves: Produced when you start to fall asleep.
- Delta Waves: Produced when you are sleeping
Over forty years of research has demonstrated that, for any given circumstance there is an accepted normal pattern of brain wave activity. This healthy pattern is referred to as Neurological Regulation. A healthy, balanced, and properly regulated nervous system will produce the appropriate brain waves at the appropriate levels and at the appropriate times for any given situation.
For example, it is appropriate for the brain to produce Beta waves when it is focused on a task however in some individuals, focusing on a task results in the production of Theta instead of Beta. Outwardly this particular patient would demonstrate symptoms of inattention and hyperactivity – much like we see in some cases of ADD/ADHD. This reversal is just one example of Neurological Dysregulation Syndrome. Some of the conditions that may be the result of NDS include: ADD / ADHD, Headaches/Migraines, Learning Disorders, Memory Loss, Overeating / Binge Eating, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Pain, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Anxiety Disorders, Insomnia, Age Related Cognitive Disorders.
Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy and Brain Wave Regulation
We use a form of neurofeedback that allows the nervous system to retrain itself to create new, more appropriate wave patterns and break the cycle of NDS. Though this technology is quite complex, the training activity is simple, painless, drugless and non-invasive. Surface electrodes are placed on the scalp and EEG activity is transmitted to the computer screen. Visual feedback of the patient’s brainwaves in the form of an animated game such as Pac Man, or a movie is provided instantly. The animated game or a movie only plays when the patient is producing the correct brainwave. If the patient’s brain stops producing the desired brain wave the game or the movie, stop playing. As the nervous system reorganizes itself based on this instantaneous information, the patterns begin to normalize. Over the course of 10 to 20 training sessions, the brain modifies itself to begin producing the appropriate brain waves at the appropriate times resulting in an alleviation of the symptoms.
The Bio-Neurofeedback Approach
Keep in mind that the brain is ultimately in charge of how severely the pain is perceived and where it is localized in the body. Pain is not an absolute measure; it varies according to what is going on in the brain. And depending on the way the brain interprets incoming signals, pain may not be correctly scaled to the actual injury, and may persist long after the injury is healed. The only way to effectively treat this self-reinforcing, self perpetuating cycle is to redefine the way the brain interprets nerve impulses and allow its sensitivity to return to normal levels. Recent clinical outcomes indicate that the technique of Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy can be used to break the cycle and lead to a major decrease or even the total elimination of chronic pain.
Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy focuses on teaching your brain how to regulate itself. Brain waves are a representation of the way you pay attention, both to the external and internal world. In the case of chronic pain, the brain is paying too much attention and has become over-sensitized. By learning to control your brain waves with the aid of this system, you can affect the underlying behavior patterns of your attention and return your brain’s pain sensitivity to normal levels.
Bio-Neurofeedback Can Help:
Our bodies have an internal, natural clock which promotes a regular sleep cycle but when this cycle is disturbed, this is where the person experiences insomnia. The definition of insomnia is the difficulty in initiating and/or maintaining sleep. The effects of sleep deprivation are cumulative and have profound effects on memory, learning, reasoning, reaction time, and what we refer to as “executive functioning” How can you pay attention, think and remember if you are exhausted? It has been found that many children who were labeled ADHD were actually sleep deprived children. When these children start sleeping the appropriate length of time, many of the ADHD symptoms go away. Adult sleep deprivation can have a negative impact on family, society, and the workplace. Sleep deprived adults are very inefficient and at times unsafe. They have more accidents, lose productive work time, and have been known to cause disasters in industrial settings. In addition sleep deprivation is a contributing factor to depression and anxiety.
Managing Sleep Deprivation
Most people don’t seek formal treatment from their physician and try over-the-counter sleep aids but such medication aren’t effective for long periods of time and gradually people become tolerant to it or worse, becoming addicted to taking the sleeping aids. We have found that most sleep deprivation is caused by brainwave imbalance. The dysregulated brainwave makes it hard for people to fall asleep and/or stay asleep due to the inability of the brain to slow down. Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy is directed at teaching the patient how to slow down the brainwave patterns making it easier for the patient to fall asleep.
“I suffered from insomnia for 9 years. I tried all the medications, hypnosis and even stress reduction therapy – nothing worked. Then my friend told me about BrainCore and after just 8 sessions I am able to fall asleep and I am sleeping through the night without waking up.”Kristi M. Hardeeville, SC
This pain sensation is a signal to you that something is wrong and needs your attention. Pain has significant survival value, but when an injury has healed and the pain continues, or when pain seems to have no obvious connection to any injury, it no longer serves a useful purpose. Pain of this type is referred to as chronic pain, and once you have fallen under its affect, it may be very difficult to escape.
The management of chronic pain has always been a medical challenge. The traditional medical approach involves increasing doses of a variety of medications until relief is attained. In some instances, the pain is significantly reduced with the use of medication; however when the drugs wear off the pain returns. The constant need for medications becomes a permanent fixture of life, often resulting in drug dependence or even addiction.
When you are injured and tissue in your body is damaged, the pain receptors in the tissue send a signal along a neuron back to the spinal cord. That neuron then triggers another neuron, through what is known as a synapse to send another electrical signal to the brain. The signal is then communicated, through hundreds of synapses to all the different areas of the brain and you perceive the signal as pain. So the sensation of pain is dependent upon the efficiency of the neurons in communicating the electrical signal from the damaged tissue to the brain.
As more and more pain signals travel along the pain pathway to the brain, the pathway becomes more and more efficient. It does this by improving the ability of the signal to cross all the synapses. Under persistent activation, pain transmission may create a “wind up” phenomenon, a reverberating loop that keeps sending the pain message over and over. It is a normal physiological process that improves the body’s ability to communicate the message that “tissue is damaged” to the brain. As long as there is tissue damage that we need to be aware of, “wind up” is normal. However, once the tissue has healed and the damage is gone, the “wind up” should “wind down” and go back to normal.
In some individuals the “wind down” never occurs and the pain pathway remains active long after the tissue has healed. In these people the pain continues beyond the healing and the process becomes pathological. This is what is happening in the chronic pain patient.
But is medication the best answer or might there be a less drastic natural alternative to treating ADHD? ADD/ADHD ranks among the most widespread neurological disorders among American children. It is estimated to affect up to 7 percent or as many as 5 million children at any one time. These statistics translate into at least one child in every classroom in the United States. While it is not itself a specific learning disability, ADD/ADHD interferes with concentration and attention, making it difficult for a child to do well in school and in social situations.
The exact cause of ADD/ADHD remains unknown however the American Psychiatric Association lists fourteen signs, of which at least eight must be present for a child to be officially classified as ADD/ADHD. These fourteen signs are:
- Often fidgeting with hands or feet, or squirming while seated.
- Having difficulty remaining seated when required to do so.
- Being easily distracted by extraneous stimuli.
- Having difficulty awaiting turn in games or group activities.
- Often blurting out answers before questions are completed.
- Having difficulty in following instructions.
- Having difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities.
- Often shifting from one uncompleted task to another.
- Having difficulty playing quietly.
- Often talking excessively.
- Often interrupting or intruding on others.
- Often not listening to what is being said.
- Often forgetting things necessary for tasks or activities.
- Often engaging in physically dangerous activities without considering possible consequences.
The Drugs Used to Treat ADD/ADHD are Derived From The Same Family as Cocaine Did you know that the drugs used to treat ADD/ADHD are derived from the same family as cocaine? Although the cause of ADD/ADHD remains unknown, the foundation of conventional treatment of ADD/ADHD is medication. This usually includes stimulant medication such as Ritalin (methylphenidate), Dexedrine (dextroamphetamine), Desoxyn (methamphetamine) or Cylert (pemoline). When stimulants are not effective, children may be given tricyclic antidepressants.
While these drugs may provide some short term benefits in reducing some of the symptoms associated with ADD/ADHD, they have harmful side effects. These include social withdrawal, decreased responsiveness to parents and other children, clinical depression, fatigue, loss of humor, increased compulsive behavior, appetite suppression, impaired growth, and the risk of addiction.
“When our son began taking the medication for ADHD he completely lost his appetite. After the first month he lost 6 pounds and could not sleep at night. The doctor had to give him medication for insomnia as well. My wife and I were scared and confused. We had heard about BrainCore from a friend and after 20 sessions he is completely off all medications with no signs or symptoms of ADHD. BrainCore is an effective natural treatment for ADHD!” Joe and Marsha M. Cleveland, OH
Brainwave Imbalance – A Possible Theory
Despite the fact that there is no proven cause of ADD/ADHD, there have been observations regarding the differences in brains of patients with ADD/ADHD versus non ADD/ADHD patients. For instance we know that the brainwaves of people with ADD/ADHD are typically slower than the rest of the population. This means they are producing Theta slow waves (4-8Hz) when they should be producing Beta fast waves (12-21Hz).
The ADD/ADHD patient compensates for the increased Theta production with hyperactivity. For example, have you ever driven down a road late at night and found yourself becoming sleepy? What do you do? Open the window, turn up the volume on the radio, or tap the dashboard? You make yourself hyperactive to stay awake! The ADD/ADHD patient that is producing too many slow waves is in a perpetual state of fogginess and is constantly trying to stay awake – hence the hyperactivity. This concept of increased slow wave production is the basis for the medical approach of administering stimulants such as Ritalin to people with ADD/ADHD. The stimulant drug or amphetamine speeds up the brainwaves and the problem is temporarily solved. But of course it is not solved at all! Not only does the medication not fix the problem but it also has undesirable side effects and we do not know the consequences of its long term use.
Bio-Neurofeedback: ADD and ADHD Natural Treatment and Natural Relief
It’s no wonder that millions of parents across the United States are overwhelmed and feeling trapped within a very bad situation: Not only have their children been diagnosed as having ADD/ADHD, but the prescribed treatment usually consists of powerful stimulant drugs. Chances are that if you are reading this webpage you probably know everything I have already mentioned with regards to medications and the fact that you found this page is because you are searching for ADHD natural treatment. Bio-Neurofeedback provides ADD and ADHD natural treatment for natural relief of the devastating symptoms associated with these conditions.
For ADD/ADHD patients, the goal of Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy is to teach the individual how to increase the production of fast Beta waves on their own. Over thirty years of university based medical research has proven that this natural ADHD therapy creates new circuits in the brain that can be accessed as needed by the individual providing ADHD natural relief. The creation of this new circuitry speeds up the brainwaves without the need for dangerous medications.
Although there are different types of headaches and a variety of causes, the headaches that typically respond to the natural migraine relief or natural headache relief provided by Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy are Migraines and Tension Type Headaches. On this page we will discuss natural migraine relief.
The traditional view of migraines is that they are vascular in origin; however more recent research has proven that migraine headaches are neurological rather than vascular. In fact medical studies have proven that migraines are the result of a hyperactive brain. It has been demonstrated that people with migraines exhibit brainwave patterns associated with brainwaves seen in seizure type patterns. For this reason, many migraine researchers characterize migraines as a slow form of seizure.
Migraines are characterized by hyperexcitability of the brain. Current research has proven that when the hyperexcitable brain is triggered by a stressor, a cascade of physiological events in the brain is initiated. This cascade of events results in a dilation of the arteries in the outer tissue covering the brain known as the dura matter. The dura matter is extremely pain sensitive and the dilation of the blood vessels in the dura matter results in the throbbing relentless pain of a migraine.
Natural Migraine Relief
The medical approach to treating migraines is with drugs. However studies have demonstrated that even the most effective drugs only work about 50% of the time. Rather than mask the symptoms, the BrainCore approach targets the cause of the migraine. The hyperexcitable brain means that the brain is producing too many fast brainwaves. In this hyperexcitable state the brain is prone to migraines. Any trigger such as stress, hunger, and certain foods can push the brain over the edge into a cascade of events that culminates as a migraine. Most people suffering with migraines can predict when a migraine is approaching. They can sense the brain being pushed into that cascade. In fact one of the more effective preventative measures is to identify and eliminate the environmental triggers. The trouble with that approach is that sometimes triggers are hard to identify and even when they can be identified, they are sometimes hard to avoid. So how can Bio-Neurofeedback help?
Through the natural migraine relief of Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy, the patient learns how to calm the brain down. The patient is taught how to produce the slower, less excitable brain waves at will. So the next time a patient feels a migraine coming on, the brain can engage this new ability and prevent the cascade of events that result in the migraine. In fact most patients that have been treated with the Bio-Neurofeedback System report that they sometimes can feel a migraine coming on but then it never happens. Up to 90% of the patients treated with this therapy have reported a 50% or greater reduction in migraine frequency and a 75% reduction of migraine severity.
The muscle contraction or tension headache is different from the migraine. It is usually experienced as a dull and often persistent head pain. It is seldom as intense as the migraine, but it can be rather constant. There is often soreness and tenderness in the neck, face and head where the muscles attach to the bone. Patients report that it feels like their muscles are in knots.
Tension headaches typically result from stress, either physical or emotional. Most often the stress causes tension on the nervous system that often goes undetected. This tension on the nervous system will often cause brainwave imbalance resulting in the patient’s inability to produce appropriate levels of Alpha brainwaves and making it impossible for the patient to relax. Recall that the brain produces Alpha waves when the brain is in a calm relaxed state. In some people this inability to produce alpha and allow the brain to relax causes muscles to tense up. These patients will often describe grinding their teeth in their sleep. The constant state of arousal results in a constant headache known as the Tension Headache.
In cases of tension headache it is important to address the two underlying issues:
The source of the tension on the nervous system. There are many possible causes of nervous system tension. These may include physical and emotional stress, drugs and toxins, poor nutrition, subluxated vertebrae, and trauma. In any case the cause must be identified and addressed.
In addition to the source of the tension, the brainwave imbalance must be addressed independently. This is because once the tension on the nervous system causes the brainwaves to become imbalanced, that imbalance becomes self perpetuating. In other words, removing the cause of the tension has little effect on correcting the brainwave imbalance and as long as the brain remains in this state, the patient is prone to tension headaches.
BrainCore Therapy addresses the brainwave imbalance with natural headache relief by teaching the patient how to produce more alpha waves so the brain can relax. When the brain relaxes then the muscles don’t tense up and the patients experience relief from their headache.
Once that is recognized, maintaining brain function becomes a principal and indispensable pathway to health maintenance in the elderly as well as to enhanced functionality along the way. Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy will enhance memory, improve sleeping patterns and provide a proven vehicle for maintaining neurological performance at an optimal level at any age.
Memory is very complex and a little mysterious. There is a lot to know about the way one can organize a lifetime of memories. Research has helped clarify several missing elements in the traditional three-stage memory model. One can now understand the way information is changed as it is encoded, stored and then later retrieved. These three processes can be described similarly to the memory of a computer.
The first step to remembering a piece of information is encoding. It is the process of translating information into neural codes that will be retained in memory. In other words, it is first getting the information into one’s brain. The brain encodes sensory information (sound, visual, touch, etc.) into a neural code that it can understand and use. This step is similar to a computer in the sense that to put information into a computer, you need to type it in on the keyboard. Then the computer translates it into its own language so that it can understand it and be able to use it at a later time.
The second step is to store it. Storage is the process of retaining neural coded information over time. The encoded information is then stored in the brain. In computers the information is stored on a disk or hard drive which is very similar to the way the brain works. The information is kept there until it is needed in the future.
The final step in memory is retrieval. It is the process of recovering information from memory storage. Retrieval requires searching and locating the appropriate information and bringing it out of storage, into conscious awareness where it can be used or, in the case of a computer, to the monitor so that it can be read off the screen.
Memory and Neuroplasticity
Each of these processes requires strong synaptic connections between neurons that are communicating this information to different areas of the brain. The efficiency of the pathways involved in memory is affected by a process known as Neuroplasticity. The concept of Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of the nervous system to change or reshape in response to how often a particular pathway is used. Here is an analogy to help you understand the concept of Neuroplasticity and how it is related to memory:
Suppose you were traveling down a road in the middle of the night and you come upon a bridge that requires you to pay a toll in order to cross. You approach a long line of toll booths of which only 2 booths are open. Given that it is the middle of the night there is very little traffic and the 2 tollbooths can handle the number of cars without any problem. You slow down, pay your toll and cross the bridge. Now suppose you approached that same bridge at rush hour when the traffic was heavy and suppose that there were still only 2 tollbooths open. Obviously there would be a back up and only a certain number of cars would be allowed to pass. In order to make the traffic flow more efficiently, the department of transit would open more tollbooths in proportion to the number of cars trying to pass. As more tollbooths open, the bottleneck would open up and more cars would be able to cross the bridge faster. In our analogy, the bridge that we need to cross is the synapse or space between each neuron in the memory pathway. When there is very little traffic along the neurological pathway, there may only be a few connections (or tollbooths) open. As we use the pathway, the number of neurological signals trying to cross the synapse increases. In response to this increase the nervous system opens new connections to accommodate this increase in signals. This opening of new connections (or tollbooths) is Neuroplasticity.
Each of the three phases of memory; encoding, storage, and retrieval require strong neuroplastic synapses. The problem is as we get older, like so many other physiological processes, the ability to open new tollbooths between neurons becomes hindered. Our nervous system finds it harder to transmit the signals efficiently and we start to have trouble encoding, storing and retrieving memories.
Bio-Neurofeedback Therapy protocols are designed to improve the brain’s ability to open new tollbooths. Through this Therapy Training, the ability to encode, store and retrieve memories is strengthened. Patients are better able to access short and long term memories.
A Typical Bio-Neurofeedback Session
In a typical Bio-Neurofeedback session, the doctor attaches surface sensors to your scalp using a small dab of a special paste. The sensors send information about your brain waves back to a computer where each brain wave is displayed for the doctor. The computer is programmed to reward you – the more you are able to control your brainwaves. The reward may be in the form of a video, pleasant sound or a computer game such as Pac Man. For example, if the reward were Pac Man, then every time your brain produced the desired brainwave, the Pac Man would proceed. In this way, the Pac Man game is actually controlled by your brain.
Over several training sessions your brain learns how to produce those waves on its own. Your brain develops new circuitry that allows you to produce the desired waves at will. So now the ADD/ADHD child that was producing too many slow Theta waves during focused activities can now produce the more appropriate Beta waves instead. Now the brain can take a more active role in focusing and problem solving. This leads to an alleviation of most of the associated ADD/ADHD symptoms. In this way Bio-Neurofeedback provides ADD and ADHD natural treatment alternatives for ADD and ADHD natural relief of symptoms.
“We were just about to put our child on medication for ADHD when we came across this system and decided to give it a try. Now our child is functioning without any issues and without any medication. The results of this therapy far exceeded my expectations.” Jeff W. Savannah, GA