Brain-Training for Anxiety

Anxiety is more than just feeling stressed or worried. It is a serious condition, characterised by persistent excessive worry, that makes it hard for a person to cope with, and take pleasure from, daily life. We all feel anxious from time to time, but for a person with anxiety these feelings cannot be easily controlled.

Anxiety can affect people of all ages, with approximately 14% of all adults suffering from some type of anxiety disorder. Anxiety can affect children too, and research suggests that about 8% of children suffer from anxiety, with symptoms starting as early as 6 years of age. We do not always know what causes anxiety, however some research shows that people with anxiety may have abnormal activity in specific regions of the brain.

Treatment can help people manage, reduce and even eliminate the symptoms of anxiety. Some treatments can be provided by a GP, or they may give a referral to a psychiatrist, psychologist or other suitably-trained healthcare professional. The Perth Brain Centre focuses on providing Neurofeedback Therapy, which was featured in Dr. Norman Doidge’s book “The Brain’s Way of Healing”, the sequel to his international best-selling book “The Brain That Changes Itself”, as an effective treatment for anxiety.

Neurofeedback is a brain-based treatment that uses a sophisticated brain-computer interface to “strengthen” or retrain the brain. The Perth Brain Centre uses special brain scans, called QEEG, to pin-point the “problem” areas of the brain. In many cases of anxiety there is too much fast brain activity in regions of the brain involved with stress and emotion. Neurofeedback can reduce the symptoms of anxiety by “strengthening” or retraining this “weak” part of the brain by normalising brainwave activity.

Neurofeedback is suitable for people of almost all ages. Patients sit comfortably whilst sensors precisely detect and measure brainwave activity. This information is analysed in real-time and presented as audio and visual feedback which is used to “strengthen” and retrain the brain. Changing the brain takes time but people can notice improvements within a few sessions.

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