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Al Mumma M.S. Licensed Psychologist

723 Park Avenue
North Mankato, MN

Neurofeedback FAQ

What is Neurofeedback?

Neurofeedback is biofeedback for the brain. Simply put, it exercises and helps "strengthen" the brain, calms it, and improves its stability. Using computerized feedback, the brain learns to increase certain brainwaves that are helpful for improved function. Sensors are placed on the scalp to record the client's brainwave activity. As certain EEG frequencies increase or decrease, the trainee gets increased or decreased feedback – usually a combination of sound and visual feedback.

What conditions respond to Neurofeedback?

ADD/ADHD, Depression, Anxiety Disorders, Learning Disabilities, PTSD, Panic Attacks, Anger and Rage, Migraines and Headaches, Bipolar Disorder, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Sleep Dysregulation, Chronic Pain, Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, Cognitive Impairment, Traumatic Brain Injury, Stroke, Autism, PDD, Substance Abuse, Epilepsy, Cognitive Decline in the Elderly, OCD, Tourette’s Syndrome/Tics

What conditions have you successfully treated?

ADD/HD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Anxiety, Depression, Stress/Panic Attacks, Alcoholism /Addictions, Anger/Rage, Migraines/Tension Headaches, PMS, Sleep Disorders, Restless Leg, and Chronic Pain.

When Will I Start to Notice Changes from the Neurofeedback Training?

It's not uncommon for clinicians to see significant changes reported by the client in the first 2-3 sessions. However, that's not always true.  Many experienced clinicians feel the client/patient may not note any changes till 3 to 5 sessions.  Others feel it can take  up to 10 sessions. In part, it depends upon the kind of improvements being tracked.   On occasion, it can take longer than 10 sessions to note any signs of change.  In a case like that, the client and clinician should be discussing the progress very closely.   NOTE:  After any changes from training are noted, a lot more training is usually needed for the changes to hold.

What do health professionals say neurofeedback does for their clients?

An informal survey of several hundred clinicians (psychologists, MD's, therapists, etc) who use this therapy report three common findings:

  1. Neurofeedback is helpful for a large percentage of mood disorders (depression), anxiety disorders, affect regulation, impulsivity and ADD/ADHD. There were many other CNS related symptoms mentioned also, but these were the most common. 
  2. Training  combines well with psychotherapy and medications.   Professionally, everyone acknowledges their patients/client get better faster, and they see more progress than with psychotherapy and/or medications alone. 
  3. Medications are often reduced.  We've done surveys with over 150 licensed clinicians who use neurofeedback with patients. All of them report that from 50 to 70% of clients end up reducing their meds (under medical supervision) after sufficient training.  Most note it is not their goal to reduce medications, but to simply stabilize and improve the client. In professionals conferences, reports of reduced meds are widely discussed in many presentations.
Are there adverse effects?

Neurofeedback has been used for over 30 years clinically, with hundreds of thousands of training sessions.   There are no known situations where a long term adverse effect has been identified.  There has never been a lawsuit for adverse effects of neurofeedback training.

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