Understanding Anxiety – How Neurofeedback Can Help?
Feeling anxiety is normal. It’s the excess of this emotion that can lead to a mental disorder.
Anxiety disorders are becoming very common, affecting millions of people around the globe.
And, if left untreated, they can lead to deterioration in rational thinking and even shrinking of certain parts of the brain.
Fortunately, there are ways to cope with anxiety disorders effectively.
In this article, we will talk about:
- What is anxiety?
- Symptoms of anxiety disorders
- Types of anxiety disorders
- How can neurofeedback help alleviate anxiety symptoms?
Let’s get started.
Here is how American Psychological Association defines anxiety:
Understanding the difference between normal anxiety and an anxiety disorder helps you spot and treat the underlying condition.
When Should You Treat Anxiety?
While anxiety can be distressing, it doesn’t always require medical attention.
Some potentially harmful triggers even make anxiety an important emotion. It helps us as humans to flee from any potential threats to our safety.
Moreover, our anxieties nowadays are due to financial, health, work, and other pressing matters of our daily lives.
The feeling is not all bad; it helps us survive many potential dangers. For instance, someone crossing a road would feel anxious about being hit by a car, which would eventually keep them safe.
But when should you take it as a medical condition? Let’s see…
Symptoms of an Anxiety Disorder:
Here are some of the symptoms of Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD):
- Being on edge or restlessness
- Constant feelings of worry
- Difficulty concentrating
- Problems staying or falling asleep
Although a healthy person can feel all these symptoms, someone with GAD will experience them at extreme levels.
Anxiety disorders most often lead to disruption in day-to-day living.
Types of Anxiety Disorders:
Panic disorder: Sudden attacks of terror that may lead to dizziness, shaking, and even breathing difficulties.
Although panic disorders may occur without any trigger, the most common cause is prolonged stress and a recent frightening experience.
Phobia: Irrational fear of a particular situation or object. A person with a phobia is unable to control their anxiety around the triggering cause.
Selective mutism: Common in children, selective mutism is a form of anxiety where a sufferer isn’t able to speak in certain contexts or situations.
For instance, a child has excellent verbal communication skills at home but he/she fails to practice them at school.
Social anxiety disorder: This can include a range of things including fear of intimacy, fear of rejection or humiliation, stage fright, and more.
Social anxiety disorder can make people avoid social contact to an extent that their life starts getting negatively affected.
Anxiety disorders can be pretty overwhelming to deal with. But, in many cases, you can alleviate anxiety symptoms by following a few strategies yourself.
Stress management: Learning and applying stress management techniques can help limit anxiety triggers.
Relaxation techniques: Activities like meditation, long baths, yoga, and deep breathing can help alleviate anxiety symptoms.
Thought management: Replacing negative thoughts with positive ones can also help.
Support network: Talking to a loved one or joining a support group can be effective as well.
That said, practicing self-treatment techniques can be difficult for some. And, they don’t always work either.
Let’s talk about one of the most effective and easiest ways to treat anxiety disorders: Neurofeedback.
What is Neurofeedback?
Neurofeedback or Neurotherapy is a treatment method that uses computer technology to improve the way your mind works.
It uses intensive brain training exercises to treat different mental disorders including anxiety.
Moreover, neurofeedback is a non-invasive, safe, and painless procedure even though it can treat chronic anxiety.
Neurofeedback helps you alter your brain’s activity through different brain exercises. It channels your brain’s natural abilities to heal.
How Does Neurofeedback Work?
The good thing is : A neurofeedback therapy session is just like watching a movie, literally. You can just sit back, relax, and can even get entertained.
First, your therapist will attach sensors to your scalp and play a video. As you watch that video, the computer measures the brainwave activity through the attached sensors.
The sensors send a signal to the computer when your brainwave activity is outside a certain range, as a result, the video grows dim. This can happen a lot of times in a short therapy session.
It’s a simple technique to train your brain to focus on the video instead of feeling anxious.
Within a few weeks of taking neurofeedback therapy sessions, your brain learns to maintain balance.
The result? You are better able to control your thoughts and feel much calmer.
Neurofeedback for Anxiety
Chronic anxiety patients tend to be in a constant state of fear because of repetitive negative thoughts.
Although medication can help relieve anxiety symptoms, you could feel severe side effects in the long run.
Therapy can also be helpful, but it can take years before you start feeling any positive changes. Neurofeedback is a non-invasive, painless, and effective long-term solution for people suffering from chronic anxiety.
Constantly feeling anxious can over-activate your brain cells. As a result, your brain remains in the fight-or-flight state. This then makes it difficult for you to let go of negative experiences.
Neurofeedback helps your brain identify this hyperactivity. And, when you constantly get this feedback in a Neurotherapy session, your brain cells learn to calm down.
Get in Touch with a Professional
The feeling of anxiety isn’t bad in itself; it’s the excess of it that can lead to a disorder.
If you are feeling the symptoms discussed in this article and they are disrupting your day-to-day life, Neurofeedback can be an effective option for you and anxiety.
Neurofeedback is a non-invasive, effective, painless, and easy method of treating all kinds of anxiety disorders.
But, if you are still not sure what to do next, let us guide you!
Get in Touch!