Biofeedback is the use of electronic monitoring of a normally automatic bodily function in order to train yourself to acquire voluntary control of that function. By making yourself more aware of your body’s reaction, you can gain more control over a range of physical and mental health issues. You can learn to change behavior by being aware of your body.
Biofeedback has been a successful treatment approach for clients at the Life Mastery Center, addressing concentration, ADHD, stress, high blood pressure and a host of other physical and emotional concerns. Since 1987, Dr. Dean Kirschner of the Life Mastery Center has used biofeedback in conjunction with other treatment methods to help individuals throughout Maryland and southern Pennsylvania, including Baltimore County, Baltimore City, Essex, Ellicott City, Towson, Lutherville, Cockeysville, White Marsh, Catonsville and Owings Mills, reach their health goals.
How Does Biofeedback Work?
There are several different types of biofeedback including EEG biofeedback (monitoring and using brainwaves), EMG biofeedback (monitoring and using electrical energy emitted by the muscles), galvanic skin response and pulse biofeedback (use of skin temperature and heart rate). All of these methods provide feedback about physical functions that would otherwise be difficult to monitor on your own.
When under stress, your blood pressure and heart rate rise, you begin to sweat, and your breathing rate increases. By monitoring these signals from your body, you can get immediate feedback as you try to control your body’s reaction to the situation. Dr. Kirschner may use relaxation techniques to help you control your body’s reaction, including breathing exercises, muscle relaxation, or meditation.
What Can Biofeedback Treat?
Biofeedback has proven successful at treating a host of physical and mental health concerns, including:
Anxiety – Anxiety is one of the most common emotional issues Dr. Kirschner treats at the Life Mastery Center. Biofeedback, particularly when combined with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, has demonstrated value in reducing hyperarousal and other physical manifestations of anxiety. By understanding how your body reacts when you’re stressed or anxious, you can learn to control those responses. By limiting your body’s reaction, you can, in turn, lower your anxiety levels.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) – By observing your body’s reaction to various stressors that trigger your “fight or flight” response, you can better understand and recognize those stressors as they occur in your daily environment. Furthermore, you can understand how your nervous system is reacting to these stimuli and take steps to work through these triggers.
Addiction – Biofeedback can be used to help those suffering from addiction to understand involuntary bodily functions that may be a symptom of exposure to, or withdrawal from, an addictive substance or behavior. For example, if you observe an increased heart rate after seeing images related to an addictive behavior, you can learn to use relaxation techniques to control your heart rate, thereby controlling your response.
Other physical and emotional issues that have been successfully treated with biofeedback include:
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Chronic pain
Ready to make a change? Contact the Life Master Center today for more information about biofeedback.