How can neurofeedback help with ADHD?

The brain’s electrical activity plays a role in the creation of symptoms such as inattentiveness.  For example, the brainwave patterns of individuals with ADHD will be different than those without ADHD.  From the viewpoint of neurofeedback, those of us with ADHD (and many other conditions) have brains that may be habitually making maladaptive choices.  Another way of saying this is that our brain is not reading the environment correctly and therefore not responding appropriately.

With neurofeedback, we can train the brain to be aware of the maladaptive patterns, and since the brain is an incredibly efficient system and doesn’t want to waste energy, it will learn to shift its functioning away from what used to work to what does work.

It is kind of like looking in the mirror.  Once you become aware (through neurofeedback) of what may be a bit off, you adjust and adapt.  Through neurofeedback, the brain sees what it is doing that is not effective or efficient, and because of its design- to function optimally- the brain starts to shift its behavior.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently announced that it will elevate neurofeedback as a Level 1/Best Support Intervention for ADHD in its Evidence-based Child and Adolescent Psycho-social Interventions. Both prospective controlled and studies employing a pre- and post-design found large effect sizes (ES) for neurofeedback on impulsivity and inattention and a medium ES for hyperactivity.

What will I notice in my child?

Many parents of children with ADHD, and adults dealing with ADHD report an increase in attention and focus, fewer outbursts, as well as an improvement in other areas controlled by the brain.  For example, parents often notice their children seem more relaxed and cheerful, sleeping better, getting along better with siblings/peers, or reaching new levels in sports or musical pursuits.

Please view the research-based evidence here.