How we can help1
How do YOU deal with having ADD?
There is a new approach to helping both children and adults learn to self-regulate their brain waves to improve their concentration. This educational approach is called Neurofeedback or computerized EGG feedback. Feedback involves giving information back to a person. The computer conveys information about what the person’s mind and body are doing at a particular moment in time. Are they relaxed and paying attention or tense and tuning out? Feedback lets the person learn. Then they can try to better that state. With 40 to 60 sessions people can acquire the skill of producing brain wave patterns which are associated with focusing and concentrating.
Unlike stimulants, Neurofeedback training appears to have a direct long term effect on increasing the child’s ability to remain focused (decreased slow wave activity) and spend extended periods of time concentrating in a problem solving manner (increased fast wave activity). There is a significant decrease in the phenomenon of tuning out (associated with Alpha and/or Theta activity) when the child is expected to be carrying out an assignment or listening intently in class.
In addition, Neurofeedback appears to have a similar effect to stimulants in that it increases the child’s “natural guards” to inhibit or avoid impulsive actions. Children already taking medication can continue while training. In most cases it is possible to gradually reduce the dosage as self regulation is mastered. Frequently the need for medication is eliminated.
This training first became available in Canada at the University of Alberta in Edmonton in 1991. It has been available in Ontario at the ADD Centre in Mississauga since 1993. The ADD Centre in Winnipeg began providing Neurofeedback brain training in September of 1994.
Neurofeedback training is virtually the opposite of therapy or treatment by means of medication. In Neurofeedback training, children quickly recognize that no one is doing “it” to them. They are totally in control, responsible, empowered and working it out for themselves. This feedback is nothing more or less than a useful tool which allows them to learn self-regulation.