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NEUROFEEDBACK - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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NEUROFEEDBACK. A person with ADHD may have some or all of the following symptoms:.

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* fidgeting, squirming when seated* getting up frequently to walk or run around* running or climbing excessively when it's inappropriate (in teens this may appear as restlessness)* having difficulty playing quietly or engaging in quiet leisure activities* being always on the go* often talking excessively


* impatience* difficulty delaying responses* blurting out answers before questions have been completed* difficulty awaiting one's turn* frequently interrupting or intruding on others to the point of causing problems in social or work settings* initiating conversations at inappropriate times


* Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness * Uncontrollable, obsessive thoughts * Repeated thoughts or flashbacks of traumatic experiences * Nightmares * Ritualistic behaviors, such as repeated hand washing * Problems sleeping * Cold or sweaty hands and/or feet * Shortness of breath * Palpitations * An inability to be still and calm * Dry mouth * Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet * Nausea * Muscle tension * Dizziness


*decreased need for sleep*high startle response*separation anxiety*slow development*early sexual interest that may lead to hypersexuality*delusional thinking *misperception of social situations (always blaming others)*odd fixations


*excessive elation (silliness)*irritability*uncontrollable rages (lasting >45 min.)*melt-downs that they don't remember*confabulation (lying)-confrontational treatment not appropriate*nightmares (violence/death) that continue into waking state (therefore they don't believe in the permanence of death)*self-harming behaviors*risk taking (impulsivity, substance abuse)(highest rate of suicide (13-16 yo have highest risk; up to 26% commit suicide and *over 50% attempt suicide)


*obsessive-compulsive thoughts and behaviors

  • *sleeping problems (mostly getting to sleep and staying asleep)
  • *hyperactivity
  • *impulsivity
  • *impatience
  • *fighting
  • *talking excessively
  • *easily frustrated; tantrums when younger
  • *disorganization
  • *poor focus/concentration
  • *anger episodes (longer with bipolar, shorter with ADHD/anxiety)
  • *risk taking (they don't consider true consequences)
  • *irritability

Not so we can diagnose our own children, but so that we can understand that it is important to diagnose our children correctly if we are going to medicate them.


1. Symptoms worsen

  • 2. New negative symptoms arise
  • 3. Parts of the brain affected by the medication can be developmentally delayed (ie. growth stunt)
  • 4. Increasing nightmares
  • 5. Increased irritability

6. Suicidal thoughts or attempts

  • 7. Heart palpitations
  • 8. Heart attack
  • 9. Insomnia
  • 10. Thyroid dysfunction
  • 11. Tics
  • 12. Headaches
  • 13. high blood sugar or cholesterol levels

Not completely. Medication can help, especially if you are in an emergency need for it.

  • But long term usage can cause problems down the line...

BUT 1st!

The QIK test....................


Why do the QIK?

  • - helps to establish a baseline
  • - helps to rule out ADHD vs. anxiety disorder
  • - helps to establish areas of the brain to train with the neurofeedback

What is

  • neurofeedback?

A brain wave treatment modality that is completely non-invasive. It involves placement of electrodes on the scalp. The computer reads the brain waves and turns them into a game that provides visual, auditory, and tactile feedback.


It works by training the brain to stay at an optimal level of learning per individual. The feedback it provides, trains the brain what the optimal level is.


When beginning with neurofeedback, finding the optimal level and placements may take more than one treatment. In between, the therapist will depend on the child's and parents' comments on the behavior since the last treatment. Occasionally, an increase in hyperactivity occurs, but this is not common. Also, if the child doesn't usually have vivid dreams, he/she may have more vivid dreams; or the opposite may occur, and the child may have perfectly peaceful sleep without dreams that he/she remembers. (these are the worst side effects I have seen, and they were easily cured with the following treatment)


NF helps ANY brain disregulation. NF can improve concentration, decrease anxiety, improve sleep, decrease head aches, improve brain function for reading and math, improve body awareness, increase understanding of social situations, decrease obsessive compulsive thoughts and actions. The list goes on and on.


How many sessions are needed so a child will have improved enough to no longer need medications or modifications?


Every child is different!!!

  • But generally 40 sessions does the trick.

The training lasts longer the more sessions that are completed. After about 40 sessions, the brain has learned the behavior it needs to have, so usually no more sessions are necessary. If there are any major life stresses, it may be necessary to return for a visit or two. I have also had some children come in for a few sessions prior to the TAKS test to help with test anxiety.