top of page
Sad on Couch

for Depression

Neurofeedback is a non-invasive technique that helps regulate brain activity, and has shown promise as an effective treatment for depression based on a growing body of evidence. Numerous studies have suggested that neurofeedback can lead to improvements in the severity, symptoms and duration of depression. 

One of the key advantages of neurofeedback is its ability to target specific brain regions associated with mood regulation. Individuals with depression often exhibit abnormal patterns of brain activity, and neurofeedback seeks to train the brain to regulate these patterns more effectively. By providing individuals with real-time information about their brainwave activity, they can learn to modify their neural patterns, potentially leading to improvements in mood and overall mental well-being.

magnifying glass.png


  • A 2020 review of research studies found that patients with Major Depressive Disorder "have shown significant clinical improvements as well as cognitive and neural changes following neurofeedback training."

  • A review of neurofeedback in the Journal of Adult Development stated that "the use of neurofeedback protocols results in significant, enduring improvements approximately 80% of the time when patients have the frontal alpha asymmetry that reflects a biological predisposition to depression."

  • A 2020 research article in the scientific journal Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience found that neurofeedback for teens with depression​ "lead to symptoms' improvement and explicit emotional regulation. Our results recommend a compensatory use of neurofeedback in depressed adolescents." 

  • A study from Cambridge University (2021) concluded that neurofeedback is an "effective intervention for both individuals with clinical depression and with secondary depressive symptomatology" and "neurofeedback constitutes a promising technique for the reduction of depressive symptomatology in many diverse populations, including patients with MDD." 

  • The National Assocation on Mental Illness (NAMI) has concluded neurofeedback to be an "excellent complement" to other interventions. "Research shows that people who incorporate neurofeedback into their treatment plan feel better able to engage with therapy and implement therapeutic suggestions — and they often need fewer medications."​

A word about expectations and outcomes with NFB

Neurofeedback can be a promising avenue for managing depression symptoms, but it's important to approach it with realistic expectations and dedication. Here's what you should keep in mind:

  • Realistic Expectations: Understand that neurofeedback is not a magic solution. It can help improve attention, reduce impulsivity, and enhance self-regulation, but it may not completely eliminate depressive symptoms. Set achievable goals and be patient with the process.

  • Active Participation: Success in neurofeedback depends on your active involvement. It's not a passive treatment. You must engage in the training process, stay committed, and work closely with your healthcare provider.

  • Consistency Is Key: Consistent training is essential for seeing results. Make a schedule and stick to it. Regular and ongoing sessions are more likely to lead to positive outcomes.

  • Communication: Maintain open communication with your healthcare provider. Share your progress, concerns, and any changes in your symptoms. This feedback will help tailor the neurofeedback protocol to your specific needs.

  • Lifestyle Factors: Neurofeedback is most effective when combined with a healthy lifestyle. Adequate sleep, a balanced diet, regular exercise, and stress management can complement the benefits of neurofeedback.

  • Complementary Strategies: Consider combining neurofeedback with other evidence-based treatments, such as behavioral therapy or medication, as recommended by your healthcare provider.

  • Individual Variability: Remember that responses to neurofeedback vary from person to person. What works for one individual may not work the same way for another. Be open to adjusting the training based on your unique needs.

  • Long-Term Commitment: Think of neurofeedback as a long-term commitment. Positive changes may take time, and maintenance sessions might be necessary to sustain the benefits. A typical course of neurofeedback for depression is 10-20 sessions. 

  • Final Outcomes: No treatment option is 100% guaranteed. Though neurofeedback has shown efficacy in treatment, it should not be expected to completely eliminate symptoms or be a replacement for medication.

See our Frequently Asked Questions for more information. 

bottom of page