Neurofeedback is a non-invasive type of therapy that aims to regulate brain activity through operant and conditional conditioning. In neurofeedback, real-time feedback rewards and reinforces desired brain activity and inhibits unfavorable activity patterns. With most things involving the brain, the process of neurofeedback might come with some skepticism and stigma. In this blog post, common misconceptions will be discussed and facts about the intervention will be stated.
Neurofeedback Has a Lack of Scientific Evidence
Neurofeedback was invented in the late 1950s and 1960s by two researchers, Dr. Joseph Kamiya at the University of Chicago and Dr. Barry Sterman at the UCLA. In the 1970s, Dr. Joel Lubar began to run controlled studies applying neurofeedback training to children, adolescents, and adults to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
Since then (about 60 years!), there have been hundreds of clinical studies conducted about neurofeedback. A majority of these studies have shown significant and long-term improvements after neurofeedback training. Many of these studies are published in reputable journals including: Nature, American Psychological Association and American Journal of Psychiatry.
Neurofeedback Is Only for Rich People
Neurofeedback can be expensive, which may lead to the perception that it is only viable for those with financial means. This often creates a stigma or sense of elistim around the therapy. However, many clinics actually accept insurance to help cover the cost of the treatment. At Mountain Vista Psychology, we are proud to say that Medicaid is an accepted form of insurance to cover the cost of neurofeedback treatment.
Stigmas About Alternative Medicine
Neurofeedback is an all natural form of treatment, meaning there are no brain altering substances that are used in the process. This has lead to skepticism from some individuals who prefer more of a western approach to treatment, such as taking medication.
However, neurofeedback is a great alternative for people who are looking for relief from mental health struggles outside of medication. Furthermore, neurofeedback is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States and is very safe.
Lack of Competence From Providers
In some cases, there may be limited regulation or oversight of neurofeedback practitioners, which has contributed to the concerns about the quality and ethics of the practice.
At Mountain Vista Psychology, your neurofeedback provider will be in the room with you at all times and involved in your care every step of the way. In addition, most our neurofeedback practitioners are also certified counselors, so your psychological and mental health needs will be well monitored.
Misunderstandings About Neurofeedback
Neurofeedback is sometimes misunderstood as a form of mind enhancement or voodoo, rather than a therapeutic tool for specific clinical conditions. This misconception can lead to unrealistic expectations about what might happen in the process. Some people worry that they will change as a person or their personality will never be the same. Don’t worry! Neurofeedback does not change who you are as a person. It simply makes your brain more balanced and work more efficiently, so you can live your best life!
If you are thinking about trying neurofeedback therapy, reach out to Mountain Vista Psychology to schedule an appointment!
Dr. Steffanie Stecker a licensed psychologist and the owner and clinical director of Mountain Vista Psychology, PLLC.
In addition, she is a board certified neurotherapist (BCN E5669) and board certified in QEEG (QEEG-D). Less than 100 people world wide are board certified in QEEG, which indicates competency in reading QEEGs and choosing neurofeedback protocols. Dr. Stecker is passionate about brain based effective therapy and creating a safe relationship for her clients to create change. She loves what she gets to do each day!