I learned about what neurotherapy is and why it is so powerful when
researching treatments for my symptoms of anxiety and trauma, which I
developed as a result of the circumstances of my birth. You can read
more about my story and how I used mindfulness (part 1) and neurotherapy
(part 2) for anxiety and trauma here.
At the time, a new book on trauma had just been published and was
receiving glowing reviews. In this book, the author recounts stories of
his own work and those of top specialists around the globe. (You can buy
his book titled ‘The Body Keeps the Score’ on Amazon US and Amazon UK.
I highly recommend it to anyone looking to understand trauma and seeking proven ways to overcome it).
In a moving case study, he tells the story of a woman whose childhood left her severely traumatized and dissociated.
Finally grown up but without any family, education, money or skills she
started neurofeedback therapy. Half a year later, she had stopped
dissociating and was able to calm herself down. She could focus and
begin talking about her experiences in talk therapy.
For the first time in her life, she was able to trust others and her
numerous learning disabilities subsided. Four years later, she graduated
near the top of her nursing school class and now works full time as a
nurse at a local hospital.
While my own story is very different, I could very well relate to many of the young woman’s symptoms.
I intuitively knew that I had to explore the potential of neurofeedback
for anxiety and trauma. So I signed up for the recommended bundle of
When I started following a course of neurotherapy for anxiety and trauma
with an experienced therapist, I noticed remarkable improvements in my
mental wellbeing and physical vitality after only a few sessions. After
half a year I was effectively healed.
I did not longer feel hyper-aroused or anxious. My focus and memory
dramatically improved. And the dissociating feelings and overwhelming
emotions had disappeared. I aslo feel much less tense. I sleep much
better. My nightmares and unsettling dreams subsided. And I woke much
better rested in the mornings.
These days, I’m less easily overwhelmed by loud noises and find it
easier to make daily life decisions. I’m a lot more patient and able to
be fully present with others. My motivation is back.
And I’m able to set myself goals and calmly and persistently work
towards them step-by-step. I’m often amazed just how calm, focused and
sharp I manage to remain now, even in very stressful situations which
many other people seem to be struggling with.
Most noteworthy, I’m able to lead a productive, happy and connected life
again. I feel like myself again and I enjoy life and look forward to
I was amazed by the power of neurotherapy for anxiety and trauma. It
healed me whole-heartedly where so many other therapies had failed
completely. I believe that this treatment has the potential to transform
the lives of many other people.
What follows is an overview of what neurotherapy is, how it works and
who can benefit. My goal is to help you evaluate if neurotherapy may be
for you and how to go about getting the best possible treatment.
What is neurotherapy
Neurotherapy makes use of the intimate relationship between mind and
brain. So it acknowledges that our feelings, thoughts and actions
produce distinct patterns of neural activity in our brain.
Disruption to these patterns leads to a wide range of difficulties, such
as depression and anxiety or problems with memory, attention and
learning. In neurofeedback training, desired brain patterns are rewarded
through sensory feedback.
Over time, the feedback teaches the brain how to modify dysfunctional
patterns, maintain positive brain states and regain brain health and
How it works
During a training session, the brain is connected to a computer
interface via sensors placed on the scalp. The sensors are non-invasive
and the method is completely pain-free. While the client watches a
computer game or movie, the computer provides the brain with feedback of
its neural activity.
If the brain approaches the desired state, the client is winning the
screen game or enjoying a clear video stream. When the client’s brain
activity drifts away from the target, the client is losing game points
or the movie picture is disrupted.
Over multiple sessions, this helps the brain move towards more functional patterns and optimize its performance.
Who can benefit
Neurotherapy can trigger and amplify neuroplasticity. The research over
the past 20 years shows positive results in three main areas:
- Emotion regulation (including depression, anxiety and OCD)
- Cognitive enhancement (including peak performance, working memory,
attention, ADHD, Dyslexia, Autism and reading and numerical skills)
- Functional recovery (post stroke recovery, reducing the symptoms of Parkinson’s, etc.)
What to look out for
The latest research has shown that results are best when combining
traditional neurofeedback training with other brain stimulation methods.
This approach is also referred to as Neurofeedback Plus.
It is much more powerful because it does not passively wait for a
favorable brain state to occur. Instead, it proactively guides the brain
into the desired state and then rewards it. This helps the brain change
in a positive direction faster and more reliably.
This approach is particularly useful when it is proving challenging to
train away deeply entrenched dysfunctional brain patterns. And in cases
of slow learning or where fast and seamless brain changes are sought.
Finding the right therapist.
My experience has taught me that the therapist is a crucial part of
successful neuro-treatment. Working with a therapist or clinician who
truly knows their field and is willing to continuously learn is
Despite being top in Google rankings, the first provider and their
off-the-shelf neurofeedback solution did little to help my brain. I
noticed some minor changes but I didn’t achieve any dramatic
So it’s worth taking time to research local providers and trying different ones until you find the one perfect for you.
In addition, I recommend seeking out a provider that offers a multimodal
approach that combines brain stimulation methods with neurofeedback
(Neurofeedback Plus or Neurotherapy). This will help you get by far the
Any therapist should first offer a detailed brain assessment on which
the subsequent treatment protocol is based. They should then monitor
your physiological responses and adjust the type, amount and frequency
of brain stimulation as required.
If you would like more information on the provider I used, please get in touch with me.
Neurotherapy alone may not be enough.
Most of all, it’s important to bear in mind that neurotherapy for
anxiety and trauma is not a magic pill. In some cases improving your
health will require multiple interventions from a number of different
Your neurotherapist should be able to make recommendations about what
other therapies may be helpful. They can also advice on which local
health professional to go to.