Attention and Neurofeedback Synchrony Training: Clinical Results and Their Significance
AbstractBackground. Previous research on information processing by the primate brain prompted further investigation of phase synchronized alpha brain wave activity at five loci in humans. The results of this investigation indicated that a particular form of attention was associated with production of whole brain synchrony. Method. Patients were treated with a dual approach, a systematic program of attention training coupled with the regular practice of multi channel alpha phase synchrony training. One hundred thirty-two clinical patients were treated for a variety of stress related symptom categories by six therapists in different locations. Patients were rated for symptom intensity, frequency and duration. Results. It was found that learning to develop this particular form of attention, coupled with the regular practice of multi-channel alpha phase synchrony were effective in resolving many common stress related disorders. Analysis of 132 cases using this dual approach found that more than 90 percent of the patients reported an alleviation of symptoms. These positive results were found with stress-induced headache, joint pain, and gastrointestinal disease. Conclusion. The authors propose that there exists a common mechanism operating in these widely different successful applications; to wit, attentional flexibility, which is achieved through systematic practice of audio taped attention exercises and neurofeedback phase synchrony training. Patients who participated in this program generally reported experiencing a release from their symptoms and from emotional conditioned responses in favor of more flexibility and more stable homeostasis. The significance of this “release experience” is discussed and attentionneurofeedback training is compared to other interventions, which rely exclusively on peripheral modalities of biofeedback training.