BioFeedback, also known as neurofeedback or EEG (electroencephalogram) Bio Feedback, and Bio Sound Therapy can be effective addiction treatments after a client has stabilized after detoxification.
Many normal bodily functions are controlled involuntarily by the nervous system: heart rate, muscle tension, or temperature, to name a few. Bio Feedback Therapy helps teach patients to exercise an element of control over these bodily processes, and can promote relaxation and calm.
BioFeedback Therapy is a noninvasive, non-drug, holistic treatment that has been used in recovery communities for over thirty years. As it does not have adverse side effects, it can be a very desirable treatment for patients who are not interested in Medication-Assisted Treatment, or for patients who are unable to take medication, like pregnant women. During Bio Feedback Therapy, either electrodes or finger sensors are attached to the patient’s skin. These electrodes or sensors measure many of the patient’s involuntary functions, such as heart rate, breathing rate, brain waves, muscle tension, and temperature.
Key therapeutic areas of focus: Anxiety, Depression, Mood disorders, Cognitive awareness of increased locus of control, CBT psycho-educational properties of learning how to control emotions that lead to addictive behaviors with specifically trained productive thought patterns.
Soul Surgery uses Bio Feedback & Bio Sound Therapy
A quiet environment, privacy and the individualized attention of a trained biofeedback clinician comprise the highly effective, and eagerly sought, treatment provided to Soul Surgery patients.
With the sophisticated equipment introduced to the behavioral healthcare profession years ago, biofeedback provides visual ‘proof’ to the participant that he or she has the ability to alter mood and emotion with carefully controlled thoughts. Biofeedback is an evidence based psychotherapeutic approach to with decades of research that substantiates its ability to bring about significant and lasting change.
While being monitored, the patient works through relaxation exercises with a therapist. Through a computer connected to the sensors, the therapist can measure the patient’s brainwaves, to see how they change depending on what is being said or shown to the patient. The therapist helps the patient to understand what the changes mean and, more importantly, why and how the brainwaves are changing. Understanding cause and effect is key. By becoming aware of subtle shifts in their body, over time, the patient can alter their own mental and physical states in positive ways.
This can be an effective therapy for addiction, because Bio Feedback trains the brain to avoid a reactive state when thinking about drugs or alcohol. Bio Feedback can help to prevent a “fight or flight” response when a patient thinks about addiction, recovery, or relapse. Since addiction can reinforce behavior patterns that lead to continued drug or alcohol use, learning to be mindful not only of the behaviors themselves, but of the mental and physical states associated with them, can be extremely advantageous.
A 2005 study found that after one year, of the patients undergoing Bio Feedback treatment, “77% were abstinent at 12 months, compared to 44%” for patients not undergoing Bio Feedback treatment. The study concluded that Bio Feedback “enhanced treatment retention, variables of attention, and abstinence rates” in patients. Another Bio Feedback study from 2008 noted that “Effectiveness in certain ‘hard to treat’ populations (conventional treatment resistant alcoholics, crack cocaine addicts, cognitively impaired substance abusers) is promising.”
Bio Sound Therapy is a treatment that integrates BioFeedback and soothing aural therapy. Like regular BioFeedback, Bio Sound Therapy is a noninvasive, non-drug, holistic treatment with no side effects.
A patient sits in a chair and is settled into a relaxed state, and then exposed to binaural audio vibrations which relax the nervous system. Once the patient is relaxed and their heartbeat slowed, they ideally will enter a tranquil, meditative state. From this calm place, the patient is guided through exercises to help manage emotions, stress, and anxiety. As with Bio Feedback Therapy, by monitoring a patient’s heart rate while they are exposed to these vibrations, it helps the patient to understand the cause and effect of their heart rate dropping or increasing. The therapist can then help the patient learn techniques to control, of their own volition, when this occurs. This can be a very useful exercise, particularly for those in recovery, in regaining ownership of one’s own body and increasing self-awareness.
By guiding patients through exercises while they are in a relaxed state, Bio Feedback Therapy and Bio Sound Therapy help patients focus on their own emotions, quality of life, and the positive control they can exercise over their body. When used in conjunction with other treatments, they can be especially effective. Both Bio Feedback Therapy and Bio Sound Therapy are available at Soul Surgery in Scottsdale, Arizona.