After more than 40 years of anxiety, depression, 20 failed medications and contemplated suicide, neurofeedback gives woman a life she never imagined.
Amanda was just 27 when she had her first panic attack. She doesn’t know why she had it, but looking back, it signaled the beginning of a spiral. At first the spiral was gentle—only a minor inconvenience— but it marked the beginning of a four-decade-long saga that led the 71-year-old to the brink of suicide.
Smart, motivated and the mother of two, Amanda pushed through the earlier years. She was head of the Girl Scouts and a member of the League of Women Voters in her town while simultaneously co-managing a family-owned business.
When she turned 40, Amanda experienced a traumatic event which opened the floodgates of not only anxiety but of unrelenting depression which only got worse over the years.
“I would wake up with such anxiety that I would be ill every day, all day long,” Amanda recalled. “With medication I could sleep for several hours, but the anxiety would wake me up. I was in agony.”
As her situation worsened, Amanda withdrew from family, community and social activities. “I just couldn’t do it anymore,” she said.
She stopped seeing her family members and friends, and only saw her grandchildren from time to time when she took them out to lunch. “All I could think about when I was with them was getting the lunch over with and going back to the couch,” she remembered.
Her marriage started straining at the seams, but through faith and commitment she and husband Ron held on.
She saw one psychiatrist, then another, who all prescribed a string of powerful mood-altering medications – more than 20 over the years.
“They always started me out on a low dose, then upped it and upped it,” Amanda recalled. “When they didn’t work or stopped working, they lowered the dosage, then switched me to another medication. This process went on and on and on.”
A new psychiatrist Amanda went to in 2017 “nearly killed” her, she said, when he took her off high-dose Cymbalta in just two weeks in anticipation of trying her on yet another medication.
“It made me so sick I couldn’t get off the couch,” she recalled. Months later she was still on the couch, shutting everyone out and surviving on ice cream.
“I finally decided that I was done. I put my life in God’s hands. I wasn’t going to any more shrinks or take any more mind-altering anti-depressants. I told myself, if the good Lord wants me living this way, then I’m not going to have a very long life. I seriously contemplated suicide.”
Within a week of making that desperate decision, Ron read an article about Center for Brain and neurofeedback in a magazine in a doctor’s office, brought it home to Amanda and asked her to read it.
She was intrigued and encouraged—but disappointed.
Center for Brain was holding an informational seminar that week, but Amanda had a plane ticket to fly up north on the day of the seminar.
In a twist of fate Amanda interprets as “divine intervention,” the city where she was headed had an unexpected snowstorm. Her flight was cancelled, and she and Ron attended the seminar.
“I was so impressed by Mike Cohen, and the potential of neurofeedback that I said to Ron that very night before we even left the seminar, ‘Let’s do it’,” Amanda remembered.
The next day she had a brain map, then flew out of town. When she returned the following week she started neurofeedback training immediately, using protocols customized from the results of the brain map. She also started on a regimen of brain-boosting micronutrients recommended by Center for Brain and saw a doctor who put her on hormone therapy (typical of Center for Brain’s holistic approach to helping clients get better).
“Within just three sessions I started feeling better,” Amanda explained. “I told my husband, ‘This is going to work!’” He had noticed the difference, too. He told her she seemed much calmer.
Over the course of the first month Amanda underwent 11 neurofeedback sessions. At that point she declared that she had no anxiety and no depression. A new psychiatrist cut her medications in half, and this time she had no withdrawal.
“My life completely changed in just one month,” she said with amazement. “I had no anxiety, no depression. Neurofeedback flipped me around 180°. I was living proof that neurofeedback works.”
After 15 sessions, Amanda had another brain map, with results she called “astonishing.” The problem areas were almost gone.
Amanda, who has continued doing neurofeedback training on a less intense schedule, reports living life to the fullest for the first time she can ever remember since that first panic attack decades ago.
“Things happen these days that shock me,” said Amanda, whose doctor recently said she could get off all medications when she feels up to it.
“One day I came into the building where I live and saw a young couple trying to figure out how to sign in as guests. Normally I would have just quietly gone straight to the elevator, but I walked over to them, introduced myself and showed them the book and chatted with them. When I got into the elevator I thought to myself, ‘What just happened?’ That same week someone in the building invited me to come down to a party and, without hesitating, I said, ‘Sure. I’ll be right down.’ Doing something like this without thinking actually startled me.
“My husband and everyone who knows me is amazed at how I’ve changed, and I’m amazed myself. This stuff is really changing my brain. I’m out and about and doing things, content and happy.
“I’m so different that my husband asks me, ‘Where did you come from? Where did that other woman go?’
“No one can tell me neurofeedback doesn’t work. It changed my life and my family’s life. It was a miracle.”