Neurofeedback to Treat a Seizure Disorder

When you think of epilepsy, you can not help but think about the seizure disorder that invariably goes along with it. An epileptic seizure diagnosis can disrupt your life by forcing you to give up driving a car or swimming alone, as well as always being worried about when the next one will strike. If there was a therapy or medication that could cut back on the number of them you experience or completely eliminate them altogether, would you take the opportunity? If you said yes, then consider neurobiofeedback therapy.

Neurofeedback is thought of as biofeedback for the brain. If you have a seizure disorder associated with epilepsy, then you may have already heard of biofeedback, which can help you prepare for them by teaching the brain to recognize when one is coming. This therapy can train your brain in a different way by actually changing the way it works through rewarding it when it functions in the correct way. This is done through the use of electrical impulses that generate inside your brain. The impulses run through a machine that audibly or visibly responds to the signals it sends.

With regard to classification of seizures, there is great evidence available that suggests the brain can be trained to prevent most epileptic or focal (simple or complex) ones from ever occurring. A study conducted in 2001 showed that 82% of patients with epilepsy who were treated with neurotherapy significantly improved without the use of any type of medication. Most of these patients showed a large reduction in its activity, and in many cases this change was for the long term.

Another group of scientists conducted a different type of study involving the use of neurofeedback therapy. In this study, they used this therapy to actually induce epileptic seizures by training the brain to follow patterns that cause them. This experiment was also very successful, because demonstrating that neurofeedback therapy can train the brain to function within almost any pattern or wavelength that is chosen.

If you feel that neurofeedback therapy might be the epilepsy treatment that you are looking for, then you should look for a neurotherapist in your area. He or she will conduct what's called a quantitative EEG assessment before you actually begin the treatment. Although a QEEG test is not necessarily used for many disorders that are treatable with this type of therapy, in the case of epilepsy it can provide the therapist with very helpful information about how the brain is functioning.

Neurofeedback therapy is painless and non-invasive and is usually without side effects, including the mildly annoying feeling of being sleepy after a session. With lots of evidence in its favor, this therapy shows an unusual promise for those suffering with a seizure disorder due to epilepsy. This non-invasive treatment method could very well prove to be the treatment option that finally allows those who suffer from recurrent seizures to get their lives back.