RESEARCH ON ANXIETY
Anxiety sufferers are often overwhelmed, exhausted, and stressed out. Some can’t concentrate due to their intense internal focus. Others obsess about specific things. Anxiety is easily detected if someone appears outwardly nervous. At other times, anxious people can appear calm but their brain seems to never quiet down. They can’t stop thinking. The constant internal chatter can get so bad that it interrupts their sleeping and steals their quality of life. They don’t live in the present, they constantly worry about the future or live in the past.
Helping people learn to calm or quiet themselves is by far the best and most effective solution for anxiety. Learning to decrease anxiety gives suffers hope as they take control of their lives. Biofeedback and EEG neurofeedback are two of the quickest and fastest ways to teach people to learn to help themselves, and it’s easy to learn. These technologies have been used for many years with solid, proven results. It’s true, one can learn how to decrease anxiety and remain calmer with neurofeedback.
CASE STUDIES ON ANXIETY
D Scheinost, T Stoica, J Saksa, X Papademetris, RT Constable, C Pittenger and M Hampson
From Translational Psychiatry (2013)
Anxiety is a core human emotion but can become pathologically dysregulated. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) neurofeedback (NF) to noninvasively alter patterns of brain connectivity, as measured by resting-state fMRI, and to reduce contamination anxiety. Activity of a region of the orbitofrontal cortex associated with contamination anxiety was measured in real time and provided to subjects with significant but subclinical anxiety as a NF signal, permitting them to learn to modulate the target brain region. NF altered network connectivity of brain regions involved in anxiety regulation: subjects exhibited reduced resting-state connectivity in limbic circuitry and increased connectivity in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. NF has been shown to alter brain connectivity in other contexts, but it has been unclear whether these changes persist; critically, we observed changes in connectivity several days after the completion of NF training, demonstrating that such training can lead to lasting modifications of brain functional architecture. Training also increased subjects’ control over contamination anxiety several days after the completion of NF training. Changes in resting-state connectivity in the target orbitofrontal region correlated with these improvements in anxiety. Matched subjects undergoing a sham feedback control task showed neither a reorganization of resting-state functional connectivity nor an improvement in anxiety. These data suggest that NF can enable enhanced control over anxiety by persistently reorganizing relevant brain networks and thus support the potential of NF as a clinically useful therapy.
A Review of EEG Biofeedback Treatment of Anxiety Disorders [link]
by Moore NC
Clinic Electroencephalograph. 2000 Jan 31
Alpha, theta and alpha-theta enhancements are effective treatments of the anxiety disorders (Table 1). Alpha suppression is also effective, but less so (Table 2). Perceived success in carrying out the task plays an important role in clinical improvement.
Efficacy of Alfa EEG Wave Biofeedback in the Management of Anxiety [link]
Ind Psychiatry J. 2010 July 19
Biofeedback is a technique in which people are trained to improve their health by learning to control certain internal bodily processes that normally occur involuntarily. Various studies in the past have shown usefulness of Alfa electroencephalographic (EEG) biofeedback in the alleviation of anxiety symptoms. Though most of the psychiatric centers in the armed forces have this facility, not much work has been done in our setup to assess its efficacy in the management of anxiety. Hence this study was undertaken.
MATERIALS AND METHODS:
This study was carried out in a multispecialty Command Hospital by enrolling 100 patients with psychiatric diagnosis from both inpatient and outpatient services. The anxiety level was assessed clinically and by using Hamilton Anxiety Scale and Taylor’s Manifest Anxiety Scale. One group of 50 patients was treated with Alfa EEG biofeedback sessions only, 5 times in a week for 8 weeks, along with specific pharmacotherapy. The other group was treated with appropriate dose of anxiolytics. The anxiety level was reassessed after 4 weeks and 8 weeks.
The response was better for mixed anxiety and depressive disorder with pharmacotherapy than with the biofeedback, but female patients showed better response with EEG biofeedback.
In the short term, Alfa EEG biofeedback therapy is almost as efficacious as pharmacological intervention in the management of anxiety symptoms, and relatively more useful in females.