RESEARCH ON BIPOLAR DISORDER
Brain training via neurofeedback teaches the brain to maintain a consistent state. Learning self-regulation allows a person to achieve mood stabilization.
After beginning neurofeedback, clients commonly comment that they can once again “trust their brain.” What does this mean? Bipolar clients undergoing neurofeedback training report less susceptibility to mood swings, increased ability to focus, and reduced anger. Their ability to function increases as they find themselves less reactive and increasingly able to respond and act appropriately.
CASE STUDIES ON BIPOLAR DISORDER
by Demitri and Janice Papolos
Book review by Siegfried Othmer, Ph.D
A new diagnostic category is emerging: Childhood bipolar disorder. It was traditionally thought
that as few as one in 200 cases of bipolar disorder had an onset which could be traced to
childhood. Biederman’s recent research shows that perhaps on the other of 20% of children
identified as ADHD could be on the way to developing full-blown bipolar disorder. To make this
identification, however, the markers of childhood bipolar disorder are destructive rage and
irritation rather than the euphoria and elation that characterizes the adult form. The proof that the
childhood form of the disorder metamorphoses into the adult form eventually must still be
outstanding. The model is still too new.
The Bipolar Disorder model is the latest attempt to give diagnostic order and specificity to the
most extreme end of the disruptive behavior spectrum. It is of course not the first. Years ago,
George Murray of Harvard suggested that temporal lobe epilepsy was under-recognized by mental
health professionals by a factor of 25. Clearly he was not referring to overt seizures here, which
tend to attract clinical attention, but rather to the subclinical seizure activity that can manifest in
erratic behavior, severe mood swings, rages and explosive behavior – but goes unrecognized as
such. Partly based on Murray’s model, we have emphasized as well the continuity between overt
seizures and extreme behavioral disregulation. Both are effectively treated with anti-convulsants,
and both respond to the same Neurofeedback protocols. The developments in Neurofeedback
therapy neatly parallel developments in psychopharmacology. But seizures have remained in the
domain of neurology, and other mental health professionals have been reluctant to build on that
On the Construct of “The Bipolar Child,” Proposed by Demitri and Janice Papolos [pdf]
by Othmer S Ph.D. Chief Scientist
Over the years we have talked about our own son Brian in terms of his temporal lobe epilepsy, and we generalized from there to severe behavioral disorders. That always had limited appeal as a model for both practitioners attending our classes and for parents of difficult children. Most professionals don’t relate readily to “subclinical seizure phenomena,” nor are parents thrilled to see the term seizure disorder used in connection with their children unless the diagnosis is obligatory. Talking about seizure disorder in larger terms was a non-starter.