Depressed . . . Moody . . . Down . . . No motivation? Neurofeedback Can Help
Over the last ten years, thousands of mental health professionals have become increasingly aware of the limitations of medication and psychotherapy for depression. SSRI medications like Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, Paxil and Lexapro are considered “standard” solutions. They target the brain.
The problem with medication
Medication frequently doesn’t give enough relief, and once on antidepressants, it’s hard to get off them, because the brain becomes reliant on them. This makes it more difficult to manage your mood, to get out of depression or to become motivated on your own.
Neurofeedback – an alternative to medication
Thousands of psychologists, psychotherapists, psychiatrists and mental health professionals now use neurofeedback daily with their clients. As an alternative to medications, neurofeedback can often help people reduce or eliminate antidepressant drugs as their brains become more stable.
How do you train mood and depression?
A great deal of research shows evidence of a neurological basis for depression. Certain patterns often correlate to depression (see example below).
The Center for Brain Training offers brain diagnostics as well as neurofeedback training. This can help identify the specific areas of the brain to target. After brain training, depressed clients often report changes in mood and motivation and become more stable. Many clients say they’re less susceptible to depression or moodiness.
When your “down” turns into depression
Think of depression as being “stuck.” Anyone can have an experience that gets them down or depressed. It only becomes a problem when you can’t lift yourself out of it. Friends say “get a grip” or “cheer up.” If you could, you would! Research has shown that when the brain gets stuck in a pattern of being down, it’s not psychological – it’s physical.
The good news is that you can exercise your brain into breaking up the stuck pattern. Many clients report that the impact of neurofeedback on their mood is powerful. We’ve seen cases where people notice being in a better mood within a few sessions, and with additional training their mood stabilizes. Neurofeedback, like exercise, is not a one time “fix.” It requires repetition.
The two images below are brain maps from different people. The map on the left is a person with a long history of depression, indicated by the orange and yellow area. It represents an excess amount of slow brainwave activity. This pattern is often associated with depression. The picture on the right displays a normal brain without depression. This “green” brain can be achieved with neurofeedback.