Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a common condition that impacts the lives of millions of children and adults.  Individuals who suffer from ADHD may exhibit a lack of focus and have difficulty paying attention. Sometimes, they have impulsive behavior, excessive talking, or are unable to wait their turn.  Medication is a common course of treatment for both children and adults, and stimulant medication is one treatment aimed at improving the focus of those suffering from ADHD.

While medicinal treatment is quite common, it is not effective for everyone with ADHD and often comes with negative side effects.  Neurofeedback is a brain training program that offers positive results for children and adults without the use of medication.

ADHD affects the balance of brainwaves.

When compared to a non-ADHD brain, it can be seen that individuals with ADHD have a brainwave imbalance.  These imbalances of both type and quantity in the Delta and Theta brainwaves affect concentration and organization.  Delta and Theta brainwaves move slower than other brainwaves and are typically only found in higher quantities when a person is relaxing or resting.  In a person with ADHD, these brainwaves remain at an elevated level while the person is in an active state.  This causes interference with the fast-moving Beta brainwaves.  Beta brainwaves are responsible for clear thinking. When Delta and Theta brainwaves interfere, it reduces the sufferer’s ability to think clearly.

Why avoid medicinal treatments for ADHD?

Medication is commonly prescribed for patients with ADHD.  Oftentimes those medications are Adderall or Ritalin.  Both Adderall and Ritalin work by speeding up the brain, which, in turn, may improve attention and focus.  Medication is introduced to the brain through the bloodstream.  This means that there is the possibility that the medication can affect the entire body as it moves throughout the patient’s circulatory system.  Occasionally, these medications can produce unwanted side effects, including reduced appetite, sleep disruptions, irritability, depression, or other side effects.  These side effects are unpleasant for adults but may be quite detrimental to growing children.

In the end, medication is a method of treatment that essentially puts a bandage on the problem.  It is unable to change the source of the symptoms.  Not only does it not change the actual problem, it is also possible to develop a tolerance for these medications, meaning that more medication is necessary over time to achieve the same result.  For some patients, medication eventually has no effect on the symptoms.

Neurofeedback is a drug-free alternative.

Neurofeedback is a brain training program that does not require the use of medication to change the imbalance in brainwaves caused by ADHD.  The training is done in short sessions that are both drug-free and pain-free.   We train the brain to have better neuropathways, creating a more balanced brain with more focus and clearer thoughts.

Training sessions involve small sensors placed on the patient’s head which monitor brainwaves painlessly.  While monitoring these brainwaves, the patient relaxes and watches a video.  The audio and visual stimuli of the video cause the brain to react.  We monitor the brainwaves in real time and can change the audio and visual aspects of the video to change how the brain reacts to the stimuli.  This is an exercise that trains the brain to create more efficient neuropathways.  Repeating this training reinforces the new pathways, causing them to strengthen for daily use.  Not only does this training reduce symptoms and create clearer thinking, but it is also long-lasting because the new neuropathways will continue to be used on a daily basis.

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