The Colorado Center for Neurofeedback & Peak Performance is here to improve your well-being. Here are our frequently asked questions regarding the process of brain mapping.
WHAT IS NEUROFEEDBACK/CONDITIONING?
Neurofeedback strengthens, calms, stabilizes and restores the brain. Just like the
muscles in your body, your brain needs training too. The overall goal of neurofeedback is to
improve neurological flexibility. The brain is optimally supposed to shift easily between states,
from sleep, to relaxation, to calm alert, and to high alert when necessary. Once your brain is
“trained,” it can then shift on its own (as opposed to being “stuck” in a state of anxiety, anger,
Dr. Daniel Amen, a well-known psychiatrist often seen on PBS, has written many books
on the brain. He specializes in brain SPECT scans and recommends Neuro-Conditioning as the
most ideal treatment option for brain health and healing. Amen says that “a healthy brain
tends to be: focused, happy, relaxed, loving, and effective while an unhealthy brain tends to be
distracted, sad, anxious, angry, and not as effective.”
We ALL want a healthy body and brain.
Conditions that Neurofeedback can help:
Attention Deficit /ADHD
Anger and Rage
And much more…
A Brief History
In 1968, Dr. Barry Sterman, a neuroscientist at UCLA medical school, proved that cats in
his lab could be trained to make more EEG activity at 12-15 Hz frequencies. Sterman used
the same cats for a NASA contract to investigate whether rocket fuel could cause seizure
activity. The cats were exposed to a volatile fuel called hydrazine. Half of the cats seized in a
predictable dose response curve. The other half of the cats (those who had increased 12-
15Hz brainwaves in the last experiment) had no seizures. It was an unexpected outcome.
After additional research, neurofeedback was tried on a woman working in Sterman’s
lab, who suffered from uncontrollable seizures. She was trained at 12-15 Hz along the
sensory motor strip. The training had the same inhibitory effect that it did on the cats and
the woman subsequently qualified for a California driver’s license. These events launched
the field of neurofeedback.
What is a qEEG?
Electroencephalography (EEG) is the measurement of electrical patterns at the surface
of the scalp which reflect cortical activity (brainwaves). A Quantitative EEG (qEEG) is the
analysis of the digitized EEG, also referred to as “Brain Mapping.” A 19-channel cap is placed
onto the head of the client and electrode gel is placed into each one of the holes for
accurate and concise frequencies to be obtained. The client then relaxes for 20 minutes (10
minutes with eyes open and 10 minutes with eyes closed) while EEG data is collected and
recorded. This data is then processed into visual images that reflect the clients unique
patterns of cortical activity and can be used by experts as a clinical tool to evaluate brain
function, identify areas of the brain where there is too little or too much activity, and areas
that are not coordinating their activity the best they could. This brain map helps us choose
where to go and what to do first. We also take a comprehensive assessment of reported
symptoms. With this quantitative and qualitative information, treatment protocols are
How does Neurofeedback work?
A Special EEG monitor and software are installed on two computers. As the client
watches a game or movie, they will get visual and/or auditory feedback based on their
brain’s activity and whether they are meeting the parameters set in their specific protocol.
It is a research proven operant conditioning reward based system. Neurofeedback provides
an opportunity for people to practice and reinforce healthy brain patterns and create new
neuropathways so the brain can function optimally.
How long do the Effects last?
In general, the results are permanent. Once the brain has been properly trained,
brainwaves like to stay where they are. After a client’s brain has gone through our Neuro-
conditioning program, results seem to stick. Should there be a head injury, extreme stress, a
serious disease, etc., occasionally an additional 5-10 “booster sessions” might be
recommended in order to remind the brain where its sweet spot is.
Can neurofeedback be done while on medication?
Yes, we start many clients while on medication. After a number of sessions, a reduction
in medication dosage is usually implemented (under the supervision of your physician). Our
clients on medication begin to have symptoms of overmedication, therefore as their brain
gets healthy they are no longer in need of the same amount of medication. For example: A
42 year old mom had been on four medications for years to treat depression. After 40
sessions of neuroconditioing, she was only using one medication at the lowest dose.
What is the time commitment?
Training requires a minimum of two sessions per week during the early stages of the
program. After a certain number of sessions, as advised by your neurotherapist, clients can
sometimes taper their sessions off until they finish the program. Most clients need
approximately 40 sessions depending on progress to fully complete treatment.
What do the Experts say?
Neurofeedback is recognized as a Level 1, Best Supported Treatment for ADHD by the
American Academy of Pediatrics.
“In my 38 years of practice, I have never seen any treatment that comes close to producing
the results that Neurofeedback offers…I have seen results achieved in days and weeks that
previously took months and years to achieve, using the best methods previously known to
us.” Jack Woodward, MD, Psychiatrist, North Carolina
“It is wonderful to see children and adults learn to regulate their brainwaves using
neurofeedback. This is the most exciting thing I have done in my career as a psychologist.
Neurofeedback empowers people to make changes and achieve things that were just not
possible for them before.” Lynda Thompson, PHD, The A.D.D. Book, Canada
“If any medication had demonstrated such a wide spectrum of efficacy (as neurofeedback),
it would be universally accepted and widely used.” – Frank Duffy, MD, Neurologist, Boston
Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School