How many sessions are needed for a full course of Neurofeedback treatment?
If the individual has good motivation to improve their symptoms and has good concentration during the neurofeedback sessions, typically there will be a noticeable response to treatment within 10 – 20 sessions, but 30 – 40 sessions are generally needed for the brain to retain what it has learned in the neurofeedback training and provide a long-lasting benefit. The frequency of sessions plays a big role in seeing success. See below.
How often do I need to schedule treatment sessions?
Treatment sessions should be booked at least two times per week. If the individual can come more frequently than two times per week, this will help them get through their treatment program in a shorter time frame, resulting in a faster reduction of symptoms.
If sessions are continuously canceled or forgotten, and the person is not coming as frequently as two times per week, this may ultimately create the need to have more sessions than normal to see needed symptom reduction.
Are there different types of Neurofeedback treatments for ADHD?
Yes, there are three primary types of neurofeedback that have been proven to help with the symptoms of ADHD. The type of protocol used for a patient depends on the results of the assessments done prior to the start of treatment, including QQEG, Actigraphy and clinical evaluation. These assessments allow for the best possible treatment protocol to be selected for a patient’s care. The different types of Neurofeedback are listed below.
SCP stands for Slow Cortical Potentials and is a specific type of Neurofeedback which trains areas in the cortex of the brain to be more flexible, rather than adjusting a specific set of brain waves (see Frequency Band Neurofeedback below for this). This application has been proven as an effective therapy to manage symptoms of ADHD, in both children and adults.
Frequency Band Neurofeedback
In this type of Neurofeedback training, the person is training the activity in a particular brain region to go up and/or to go down.
In Frequency Band Neurofeedback the patient may be encouraged to either slow down specific brain activity (recorded by the EEG sensor) or make activity faster, depending on the area of the brain that needs to be modified. These adjustments in brain activity can help with the symptoms of ADHD.
SMR stands for Sensorimotor Rhythm which is a person’s primary brain rhythm. In this type of neurofeedback, the person is training the brain with a higher than normal SMR activity to be more normal. This can also help with the symptoms of ADHD.
Does it ever happen that the type of Neurofeedback being used needs to change for a given patient?
Every 10 sessions your therapist will evaluate your progress and can change a treatment protocol if necessary.
Are the effects of Neurofeedback able to last long-term?
The efficacy of stimulant medication for treatment of ADHD will decrease with time. This will occur due to the upregulation of the Dopamine transporter availability. As a result, as individuals continue ADHD medications they are broken down more quickly. Neurofeedback is based on operant conditioning. Therefore, once regulation of the brain is learned the effects are long-lasting. Research also shows that attention, impulsiveness and hyperactivity can further improve with time and use of the training gained during the treatment course. Many people see sustained benefit after two years2.
What is the success rate of Neurofeedback?
Do I get electric shocks through the electrodes that are fixed to my head during treatments?
No, these electrodes are just measuring (or listening to) brain activity and send that signal back into a computer for analysis.
Do I need a referral from my GP or other physician?
You do not need a referral for treatment. Based on an initial consultation, a trained therapist will decide whether Neurofeedback is the right treatment for you. We will coordinate care with your current treating provider.
Is Neurofeedback just a therapy for children and adolescents?
No. Adults can respond positively to Neurofeedback as well.
Can Neurofeedback be done from home?
No. You will need to come into the clinic to receive all the Neurofeedback treatments. The specialized technology used for treatment and the guidance provided by the experienced Neurofeedback specialist is only available in our clinic.
Why is a QEEG necessary before starting Neurofeedback treatments?
Every individual has unique brain activity. Different people have different brainwave patterns and rhythm, even within a population of people with ADHD. It is important that Neurofeedback sessions are tailored to the specific person’s brain patterns. Through a QEEG assessment, it is possible to determine which brain patterns need to be worked on so that the result of treatment is a more normal set of brain activity and relief of the associated ADHD symptoms.
Can I continue medication use throughout the treatment period?
During treatment with Neurofeedback, you can take any prescribed medication as recommended by your physician.
Can I reduce medication use throughout the treatment period?
It is possible to start reducing medication during treatment with Neurofeedback but this is determined on an individual basis. In fact, Neurofeedback is considered to be a recommended treatment approach if a person’s goal is to transition off medication. Before making any medication changes a person should always consult with their prescribing physician first.