What is Peripheral Biofeedback Training?
Whilst Peripheral Biofeedback Training is used to help a wide range of problems, it is most commonly used to help people gain control over their stress responses. It is normal for your brain and body to respond to stress, whether that it is to increase your blood pressure as you stand up so you don’t faint, or to speed up your mind a little so you perform better in a test. Normally these automatic responses to stress actually help people to function better, but sometimes these stress responses can become exaggerated or out-of-sync and can result in people “freezing” under pressure, or can make it hard to “switch off” and relax. Peripheral Biofeedback Training can help people gain control over these unhelpful responses to stress and get the brain and body working better to improve performance and resilience.
Initially special sensors are needed to detect small signals from the body, such as body temperature, breathing, circulation, heart function, muscle tension and sweat responses. Specialised hardware and software provide real-time feedback, and with one-to-one training, people can learn to gain greater awareness and control. Over time, and with regular practice over a few weeks, long-term improvements can be maintained without needing to use sensors or equipment.
Who can benefit from Peripheral Biofeedback Training?
NASA, The United States Military, and many top and Olympic sports teams have been using Peripheral Biofeedback Training for years to improve performance and resilience. Research shows that Peripheral Biofeedback Training can also be an effective treatment for anxiety (including student text anxiety), chronic pain, depression, diabetes (glycemic control), headaches (migraine and tension-headaches), hypertension (high blood pressure), IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), pre-eclampsia (pregnancy-induced hypertension) and Raynaud’s Disease. There is also evidence demonstrating that Peripheral Biofeedback Training can help other problems such as Fibromyalgia, Functional Abdominal Pain, insomnia and tinnitus, however there is less research published about this. At The Perth Brain Centre we most frequently use Peripheral Biofeedback Training when helping people with: