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Stressed Woman

for Trauma and PTSD

Neurofeedback is a non-invasive technique that helps regulate brain activity, and has shown promise as an effective treatment for trauma and PTSD based on a growing body of evidence. Numerous studies have suggested that neurofeedback can lead to improvements in traumatic symptoms, including flashbacks, panic attacks, nightmares and heightened anxiety.

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  • A 2023 article in the European Journal of Psychotraumatology found that "the effect of NFB on symptoms of PTSD was moderate and mechanistic evidence suggested that NFB leads to therapeutic changes in brain functioning." The mean remission rate of PTSD symptoms was higher in the NFB group (79.3%) compared to the control group (24.4%).

  • The American Psychological Association highlighted a 2020 study which found that "24 sessions of NFB significantly decreased PTSD symptoms, internalizing, externalizing, other behavioral and emotional symptoms, and significantly improved the executive functioning of children aged 6–13 years with severe histories of abuse and neglect who had not significantly benefited from any previous therapy."

  • A meta-analysis of five studies on the effectiveness of PTSD found "optimistic results" which "qualify neurofeedback as probably efficacious for PTSD treatment."

  • In a 2016 study of 52 individuals, researchers found neurofeedback produced "significant PTSD symptom improvement in individuals with chronic PTSD, as well as in affect regulation capacities."

A word about expectations and outcomes with NFB

Neurofeedback can be a promising avenue for managing trauma and PTSD 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 PTSD, but it may not completely eliminate every symptom. 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. 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 PTSD is 20-40 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. 

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