Dr. Thomas Antone, DC, AMD

Doctor of Chiropractic, Alternative Medical Doctor, Neurofeedback Therapist,                                                                                                             Hyperbaric Specialist                                                

You can stop ADD, ADHD, Anxiety, Depression, PTSD, Sleep Disorders & Brain Fog

 

EEG Neurofeedback Brain Training

Treating the CAUSE instead of the symtoms

 

 

 

Changing Lives

Since 1996, EEG Neurofeedback Brain Training has been changing lives at my clinic in Los Gatos, California.  My clinic has easy access to Hwy 17 and then to Hwys 85, 280 and 880.  My days and hours are:  Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from Noon to 7:00 PM. 

Although Neurofeedback was initially developed to treat Epilepsy, it is also utilized to remediate the issues of ADD and its related ADHD.   It is also quite effective in the treatment of several other brain-related issues - such as Sleep Disorders, Anxiety & Depression, Dyslexia, Chronic Pain, PTSD and many more - including what's commonly called "brain fog".  

Neurofeedback sessions are 30 minutes each, two to three times per week, within a course of 24 sessions.  Though unusual, some conditions require more.

Pricing:  The 24 Session Neurofeedback course is $2,700, payable at the time the course begins.    A 48 session course is $4,800.   I will bill your insurance for you to help you recoup as much as possible.

Important Notes:  

1. I keep the price low to make this valuable training more widely accessible.   

2.  I stay in attendance during each and every session.  This is so that I can make any modulations that may be necessary during that time.

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EEG Neurofeedback for ADD & ADHD ©

 

An overwhelming body of research now shows that EEG Neurofeedback Brain Training is effective in the treatment of ADD/ADHD in both children and adults, without the dangerous side effects that psycho-stimulant medication can have. Neurofeedback is a safe, all-natural, pro-active approach to learning and behavioral disorders, successfully utilized at my clinic for the past 23 years. It is effective because it re-trains the brain to maximize inherent focus and concentration abilities by repeatedly challenging it to remain on-task.

EEG Neurofeedback supports our natural ability to:

√ Make appropriate “state” choices throughout the day

√ Respond to stress without frustration and debilitating mental road-blocks (as in Autism & OCD)

√ Maintain focus and concentration at school or at work

√ Facilitate smooth, balanced information processing

√ Increase the flow of nutrients like glucose, fats and oxygen into the brain by activating “slow’ areas

Without sufficient stimulation and training of particular areas of the brain’s neural network, learning is cumbersome and delayed for ADD/ADHD individuals; concentration becomes labored and attention to task cannot be sustained. This leads to diminished memory and retrieval skills that can result in the “blank stare” seen too often in the eyes of affected children and adults when asked to respond to information that has just been given to them. Neurofeedback supplies this stimulation and training.

EEG Neurofeedback is a safe, all-natural, scientifically designed, computerized Neurological Training System, originally formulated in the 1980s by Susan and Sigfried Othmer, PhD, to help remediate the agonizing symptoms of epilepsy. It supports the function and balance of the brain’s right and left hemispheres. It also enhances the normal, harmonious relationship between the brain’s two major centers: Limbic (emotional) and Thalamic (rational). I was trained and certified by the Othmers in 1996. Neurofeedback has positively changed my life and the lives of every patient I have been blessed to work with.

I recommend a conscientiously applied program of regular EEG Neurofeedback sessions, usually following a pattern of three days per week for a total of 24 to 48 half-hour trainings. This consistency will enable the patient to fully engage the brain’s tendency toward plasticity and adaptation via the repeated production of a particular brain-wave pattern who’s output has waned - suggested by testing with the Test of the Variables of Attention (TOVA). Not only does focused attention return to the scene but there is a noticeable calming and balancing effect as “over-and-under activity” becomes better regulated and the brain’s counterbalancing system of energy use, with a more appropriate attenuation of specific stimulation, is efficiently monitored in the background. As documented in the book, “Healing Young Brains” by R. Hill and E. Castro (2009, Hampton Roads Publishing), these results are unparalleled.

Attention Deficit: Some doctors say there’s no such thing, others say it’s epidemic.

Witnessing a child or adult, struggling with learning or behavior problems can be a sad and/or frustrating experience for a parent or spouse. They may often be out of control, over/under stimulated or wildly vacillating between all of these as their inner sensorium is overwhelmed by ungoverned stimulation patterns. Their behavior is often difficult to explain and can easily disrupt an entire classroom or household.

Attention Deficit (and its many forms: ADD/ADHD/LD) is a dysfunction of the Central Nervous System (CNS) and more specifically, the Reticular Activating System (RAS). The resulting inability to process and sort incoming information and stimuli from both the inner (subjective) and outer (objective) worlds leads to the inattention, lack of concentration and memory/learning issues noted above. ADD may manifest as undue passivity and “spacey” behavior while ADHD may exhibit unruly, aggressive or hyperactive behavior. The Learning Disordered (LD) individual may simply be a slow learner who continues to under perform and achieve for their age and grade-level.

In all these cases, it is apparent that the brain has diminished or lost its ability to make appropriate state choices. This is represented as the individual’s “state of mind” at any given moment. Thus, brain states associated with high activity are carried over from high stimulation periods into those of lower stimulation, or visa-versa. The resulting behaviors do not not match the moment. Those affected by this disorder, which is not an organic pathology but rather a dysfunction, are not typically “bad” or “stupid” but are usually quite intelligent, good people. It’s just that they may be temporarily malfunctioning.

Causal factors in Attention Deficit

As a dysfunction of the CNS, Attention Deficit’s specific causal factor is a limiting impairment of the RAS, the center of conscious activity that coordinates learning and memory. Reticular literally means meshed or networked. This system extends from the central root of the brain stem to all parts of the Cerebral Cortex. It is essential in initiating and maintaining wakefulness, introspection and focus while it then directs attention and concentration. Thus it can be said that the RAS supplies the appropriate neural connections necessary for smooth information processing and clear, non-stressful attention. It is quite possible that there also exists a genetic predisposition toward Thalamic under arousal combined with Limbic overrides; and/or that neural building materials are underproduced during fetal development and childhood. Either way, demands for optimum neural connectivity cannot easily be fulfilled and efficient processing is then lessened. It is important to reiterate that this is a functional issue, not a pathological process.

In other words, neural “software” is malfunctioning and inhibiting proper channeling of incoming information within the brain’s feedback loops - resulting in inattention to certain data and over attention to others. And, neural “hardware” may be temporarily experiencing limited production and unable to keep up with the demands of increasing stimulus or “traffic”. The outcome: New learning and memory are slowed while the demands for management, routing and processing of information cannot be satisfied. These insufficient connections result in existing neural pathways becoming repeatedly overworked and overstressed. This often leads to partial gridlock or complete shutdown so that little or nothing gets processed at all, generating the bewilderment, frustration and/or behavioral problems in affected individuals. These software and hardware inefficiencies can be tracked via EEG observation (during attentive demands) of the overproduction of Alpha and Theta brain waves and the under-production of Beta waves on an EEG trace. Alpha and Theta are more characteristic of early sleep patterns and are obviously inappropriate to a situation requiring attentiveness. This limitation can adversely affect an individual’s Perceptual Awareness.  So, because Attention Deficit is a functional rather than a pathological issue, my experience has been that it usually responds best to a systems approach rather than a pharmaceutical one. 

Although Attention Deficit is primarily an issue of ‘state mismanagement’ of brain systems - leading to a disruption of the feedback loop between brain state and brain wave production - it also involves the entire sensorium (vision, smell, taste, touch, hearing). When the brain is unable to manage its states and/or deprived of the optimum neural connection density necessary to process neural traffic smoothly, there is conflict between various stimuli, vying for attention. Competitive stimulation from multiple internal and external sources can create a kind of “Gaussian white noise” effect that is irritating, overwhelming or both. An over-taxed system is unable to tune in and turn up some stimuli while tuning out and turning down others. Net effect: Overload.  This is brain-state mismanagement at its worst.

This inability to attenuate creates even more noise within the perceptual system and it can become so overly noxious and continuous at times that it becomes competitively assaultive and crippling to any attempt at concentration. Feelings of helplessness and anxiety can become overpowering, often leading to one of two outlets: Shutdown or hyperdrive. For many teens and adults, this can lead to the abusive use of alcohol and/or “hard” drugs and the plethora of their mimetic pharmaceutical substitutes. It's a natural quest for some shelter from the storm.

It is my opinion that, nutritionally, those who suffer the ADHD syndrome of symptoms have ample supplies of Acetylcholine and clear, *lipofuscin-free and unobstructed Cholinergic pathways. This may allow them to actively compete with and overwhelm the intrusive, neural-noise messaging. Thus, the ADHD individual attempts to operate at a noisier level via intense hyperactivity, in an attempt to drown out the noise from the overcrowded array of competing stimuli within the brain. This can manifest as random kinetic activity and/or persistent vocal repetition, eye rolling and noise making. (*Lipofuscin is a lipid-containing residue of lysosomal digestion; a product of the oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids. It can be cleared.)

Conversely, ADD and LD individuals may have low Acetylcholine levels and adverse lipofuscin accumulation within their cholinergic pathways, making a competitive response more difficult. When things get too noisy for them, they “shut down”. Cognitive processing becomes limited as a way to avoid and deflect the overstimulation. The aforementioned neural noise assumes a numbing and almost hypnotic property and they literally give up to it. Neural thresholds have been reached and can no longer be sustained. Thus, unlike ADHD, ADD and LD include this shutdown and tune-out response. This can all become quite aggravated by a chronic lack of sleep and/or too many hours of TV.  See below...

What can be done to correct these dysfunctions?

I have witnessed three common and well-documented strategies that continue to prove successful, especially when combined: EEG Neurofeedback (featured here), Target Nutrition & Supplementation (TNS) and reduction or elimination of common Network TV.

EEG Neurofeedback Brain Training:

Neurofeedback is a safe, easy, drug-free way to resolve these issues at the causal level. Using three small electrodes, one clipped on each ear and one on the scalp, we selectively separate and monitor four of the brain’s six basic frequencies via an electroencephalogram (EEG). These brain waves are then read by the computer’s gaming system, where they are ‘fed back’ as a simple video game. This video and audio feedback is the training device that directs the patient to continue to successfully produce the desired frequency during ten, three-minute segments.  It is proven that this training works on a functional level, breaking up patterns of rigidity and increasing the brain’s natural flexibility. Thus, it improves the ability to move into optimal hemispheric interaction.  

“It may be this very flexibility - the capacity to move quickly between various basic brain states (such as between alert and diffuse attention or rest and reaction) that is the hallmark of human health and peak performance.” Julian Isaacs, PhD.

TNS (Target Nutrition/Supplementation): Dietary modifications, such as the elimination of allergenic foods and the addition of all-natural supplements, specifically formulated to help support the function of the Central Nervous System, will help to balance both neural growth and neurotransmitter production within the CNS. TNS supplies: (1) neural building materials, (2) neurotransmitters and their precursors and (3) an appropriate fund of neural buffers (such as GABA). With proper nutrition and supplementation of target nutrients, neural networks can be created and forged quickly, to meet the increasing demands of heavy neural traffic, especially in the pre-pubescent child.  It is now well established that given the chance, individual neurons can grow at the rate of 3-5 mm per day!  And, there are roughly 100 billion neurons and a staggering 900 billion supporting glial cells in the brain. That’s a grand total of one trillion cells to be nurtured and coordinated - more than 100 times the number of stars estimated to exist in our galaxy. These cells exist within a matrix of fatty acids and phospholipids that comprise 1/2 of the dry weight of the brain. Providing adequate building blocks for this ‘hardware‘, while training and updating the ‘software’s’ functionality via Neurofeedback, serves to increase efficiency and operational stability.

TV watching has come under more scrutiny with the release of a study by the Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center of Seattle, Washington.  Researchers followed the progress of 2,623 children, ages one and three with various TV viewing habits. The children’s behavior was then analyzed at age seven. Those who watched the most TV had the most attention problems at age seven. Children who watched less than several hours per day were also adversely affected.  Every hour of TV watched by children aged one through three increases the risk of ADD by 10%, compared to the control group who watched no TV at an early age. “Parents should be advised to limit their young child’s TV viewing.“, said Dr. Dimitri Christakis, the study’s head researcher. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents not allow children under 2 to watch any TV, and severely restrict TV for those over 2.

Combining these three elements can create an immediate and long lasting change in the severity of the symptoms displayed by the ADD, ADHD and LD child or adult.  In fact, I have observed these symptoms completely disappear with only slight dietary changes and moderate TV-time changes when combined with regular EEG Neurofeedback training sessions over a two month period.

Are there any side-effects to the Brain Training?

 No. It is completely safe, painless, drug-free, and nontoxic! EEG Neurofeedback Brain Training works to correct the inclination toward inattention by rewarding the simultaneous inhibition of one frequency (i.e., Theta brain waves) and production of another (i.e., Beta). This is accomplished by playing a video game using only selective brainwave activity as the control apparatus. The games revolve around the control of your chosen 'avatar' as it performs various activities within the game on a large screen.   Nothing is sent to the brain ... its activity is continually being monitored and interfaced with the computer game. The results are permanent and usually accomplished within 24 to 48 sessions of 30 minutes each, two to three times per week.  Since 1996, I have witnessed the success of Neurofeedback within all age ranges.  It has proven to be effective in remediating Anxiety, Depression, Stress Disorder, Insomnia, PTSD,  Chronic Fatigue, Headaches, Migraine, PMS, and some types of Epilepsy as well as improving the spectrum of symptoms that are diagnosed as Autism and Asperger Syndrome.

Finally, there are other specific issues where EEG Neurofeedback training can be helpful, such as in cases of Traumatic Brain Injury (concussion), and stroke. In these instances the training does not so much get rid of the problem as it simply organizes the brain to function better in the context of whatever injury or loss exists. [See my "Services" page on this site for information regarding the use of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) in conjunction with the Neurofeedback to fully remediate these issues.)

Once you accept the possibility that this training might be effective for you, a family member or student in your class, the next question is: Will this training change who you are?  Not really.  If a child known for his temper outbursts does the training and the rage goes away, he is certainly different but the parents would say, “We have our real son now!”  A person may often not be defined by their unmanaged traits. The training brings you closer to who you really are.  That is my experience.  And because this training helps to allow your True Self to emerge, others may notice the changes in you even before you do.

Is there ever a 'completion' to the training?

The training is usually complete by 24 to 48 sessions. If there is a loss of optimal training effect after completion - ie, due to circumstances in your life - a few 'booster' sessions may be recommended.  However, Neurofeedback training can be used without limit to enhance performance and deepen the Human Experience. This “peak performance training” continues to be of keen interest to professional athletes, corporate executives, performing artists and anyone who is interested in maximizing their life experience.  Autistic adults also greatly benefit from on-going treatment.

[During our initial consultation and evaluation visit, I will outline the special nutrients indicated in a comprehensive TNS program and/or a referral to an M.D. who will work with you in removing any unnecessary drugs from your life or your child’s life. Most psychoactive prescriptions drugs must be reduced slowly and steadily. The training can proceed while this is being accomplished.]

Recommended Books:

• “Healing Young Brains - The Neurofeedback Solution” , R. Hill and E. Castro

• “The New Learning Revolution”, Gordon Dryden and Jeannette Vos

References:

1. “The Brain That Changes Itself”, Norman Doidge, 2007, Penguin Books. Also see: “First Direct Evidence of Neuroplastic Changes Following Brainwave Training”: www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100310114936.htm

2. “Structure and Function of Cholinergic Pathways in the Cerebral Cortex, Limbic System, Basal Ganglia, and Thalamus of the Human Brain”; Marek-Marsel Mesulam, www.acnp.org/g4/GN401000012/CH012.html

3. Julian Isaacs, Ph.D, quoted from a Neurofeedback lecture in Los Angeles, CA. 4. Pediatrics, 2004; 113:708-713

A list of review papers and meta-analyses can also be found at: www.eegspectrum.com/articles

Note: This is copyrighted material. None of this material, in whole or in part, may be used in any way without the permission of Dr. Antone.

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