Modern Neurofeedback: Highly effective & practice-proven

Collaboration between Researchers, Clinicians, and Instrumentation Developers...

For more than thirty years EEG Info has been developing neurofeedback protocols with the highest clinical effectiveness along with practicality for the individual health practitioner. This development depends on close cooperation among teams of clinical researchers, scientist-practitioners, hardware developers, software writers, and game developers.

The results are succinctly taught in courses for healthcare professionals and published in the form of Protocol Guides that are updated frequently, typically on an annual basis. Additionally, EEG Info offers a variety of services in support of the therapeutic method, in order to assure maximal clinical effectivity.

Simply put, EEG Info exists...

...to make the neurofeedback practitioner successful.

It is our highest objective to assure that all those who work with neurofeedback are positioned for the best possible clinical outcomes for the widest range of clinical conditions. This is in the client’s interest in first instance; secondarily, it is in the interest of the clinician; and finally, it is in the interest of those of us who are directing all available resources to the further development of this field.

Just why is the above collaborative approach so essential?
 
In our extensive experience, success in neurofeedback depends on the careful selection of numerous therapeutic and technical parameters. Plainly, the training needs to be carefully individualized, tailored to each client and ongoingly adjusted. Even with the standard SMR-beta frequency-band training that initially launched the field - and is presently abundantly evidence-based - involves some fifteen parameters that need to be carefully coordinated for good results.

Our own group conducted highly successful studies using the SMR-beta paradigm back in the nineties, and the need for individualization of the training parameters became apparent at that time. EEG Info has always made its findings widely available, and of course they were always taught in our courses.

>> Significant milestones of technical development <<

Ongoing technical refinement for more than thirty years

On the basis of empirical investigations relying on both qualitative data and quantitative assessments, the development effort has made steady progress over some thirty years. In some ways, current methods are unrecognizably different from those that launched the field. A similar evolution has taken place on the theoretical frontier. Whereas the original model for neurofeedback was standard operant conditioning, it became clear as far back as the early nineties that this could not be the full story. A more potent model for the self-regulation process had to be developed. This in turn hinged on fuller understanding of the brain as a self-organized dynamical system, one that engages with itself in a manner that is now augmented by the feedback on its own activity. Protocol development then became a process of uncovering what information the brain would find most useful for its own functional enhancement.

This process led us organically and progressively to ever lower frequencies, with entry into the regime of the Slow Cortical Potential (SCP) transpiring more than ten years ago. This has taken us to the foundations of the brain’s frequency-based regulatory regime, and thus to the most broadly impactful and clinically efficient neurofeedback training.

The ILF Neurofeedback Method

The ILF Neurofeedback (Othmer Method is sufficiently distinct from conventional neurofeedback that it deserves its own designation. It has its roots in standard frequency-based training, but the method has been extended to very low frequencies within the SCP range. The training targets the relationship between two sites in order to improve neural network communication, the essential task in redressing mental dysfunctions.

The method distinguishes itself in being symptom-based, in the following sense: The symptom presentation is used to discern basic patterns of dysregulation, and then electrode sites are selected to redress these patterns. Declining symptom severity is then a measure of our success.

The method directly targets the improvement of function rather than the expunging of dysfunction. This means that we are engaging known neural network configurations that we all have in common, and so we can use standard protocols, well-established and well-characterized electrode placements. Dysfunction diminishes as a secondary consequence of improved function. Improved function is then also confirmed with functional testing.

The method is process-oriented, in the sense that the training parameters are continually adapted to the evolving status, not only from session to session, but even within sessions. For this we rely on client reports of felt change within the training session.

The training process occurs largely beneath the level of consciousness, a matter of the brain engaging with novel information about itself. This permits training to be accomplished even with clients who are non-communicative or suffer from diminished consciousness. Even infant brains can be trained with our method.

Because of the importance of selecting the appropriate protocol, and of adapting the training parameters throughout the training, our method places high demands on the clinician’s observational skills. The method involves a substantial learning curve, as is the case with other mental health disciplines.

The Technical Implementation

The instrument supporting the Othmer Method offers the utmost in practical utility because the design has been driven by scientist-practitioners throughout. The complexity lies beneath; practitioner usage is straight-forward. This allows the practitioner to devote attention to the client rather than to the instrument.

The trainee is well-served through the availability of a variety of feedback animations. Feedback is delivered through the primary sensory channels: visual, auditory, and tactile. It is intended to be immersive, yielding a unitary experience that reflects the brain-based information.

The instrument has received all requisite regulatory approvals in the United States, in the European Union, and elsewhere.

Intended for Professional Use Only

Whereas there are no legal restrictions on the use of neurofeedback by anyone in most parts of the world, the potential of rapid and impactful responses to the Othmer Method protocols make it prudent to restrict attendance at our courses to licensed healthcare professionals. Further, the instrument may be purchased only by those who can document their attendance at the Introductory Course.

Professional Training Conducted by Active Practitioners

The foundational course is taught in all cases by people who are actively engaged in doing the work. Typically instructors come to the task with years of clinical experience. The course material is continually being updated to remain current with developments in instrumentation, software, and in application to a variety of clinical challenges. Presently the foundational course is being taught in nine languages and in eleven countries. Instructors are members of the primary professions that are drawn to neurofeedback practice: psychiatrists, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, and occupational therapists.

Mastery of the discipline is ultimately acquired through clinical practice, and we support that process in a variety of ways. We offer training courses for working with specific conditions such as ADHD and PTSD, and we offer a comprehensive program of supplementary study leading to certification. We provide access to the largest user-community in neurofeedback through our Forum (available in several languages), and we offer consultation on an individual and group basis.

EEG Info sponsors its own formal studies (amounting to ten in number at the present time), and also supports independent initiatives in research (see: studies). Even when matters concern techniques other than our own, we are prepared to offer advice on research design and parameter selection, and we also offer instrumentation support.

No week without enthusiastic reviews

No week passes without our being informed of noteworthy clinical reports that testify to the profound recovery capacity of the brain when that process is aided by neurofeedback. This is highly motivating to keep investing in innovation, effectiveness and practicability.

It is a joy to observe how neurofeedback is finally entering the medical pantheon - now some 45 years after the initial discovery of the method. We are especially proud that the Othmer Method ranks near the top in terms of appraisals by neurofeedback clinicians themselves.