What is Biofeeback?
Biofeedback is a gentle, non-intrusive method using electronic devices to monitor and to present biological information back to an individual, who can then learn to control the process being monitored. This self-regulating procedure provides immediate information about your body/mind system, allowing your brain and body to readjust and create a new balance. Breathing relaxation utilizing heart rate variability (HRV) is one example of a biofeedback modality that I use with my clients. When needed, I will use other types of biofeedback when necessary.
Biofeedback-Heart Rate Variability (HRV)
Heart rate variability (HRV) biofeedback uses sensors placed on a finger or earlobe, or on your chest and lower torso, or wrists to measure the time interval between each heartbeat. HRV is a powerful biomarker for physical health, emotional well-being, and cognitive performance. A higher heart rate variability indicates an optimal cooperation between the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous system. What this means is that you are more physiologically balanced and with that, you are better prepared to deal with stress. In essence, you can bounce back faster and think better. When practiced daily you will feel the benefits for both your mind and body.
What are the benefits of Biofeedback HRV?
- It’s a noninvasive type of treatment, which has many advantages in and of itself
- It helps people become more keenly aware of the powerful connection between their body and their mind
- It empowers people by giving them greater control over their symptoms and their health overall
- It can help decrease, and in some cases, completely eliminate, the need for medication and other forms of treatment (This is especially beneficial for individuals who can’t afford medication, receive little to no benefit from medication, are unable to tolerate certain medications, or prefer to avoid medication if alternative options are available)
- It can improve the effectiveness of psychotherapy by helping them become more aware of psychological/emotional issues (e.g. denial, fear, or resistance) that may be hindering their progress
- Over time, you’ll be able to practice the techniques on your own to continue to manage your symptoms.
What type of medical conditions can be helped by Biofeedback?
When used with other therapeutic approaches, biofeedback has been effective in the treatment of a wide variety of health concerns, including:
- Excessive stress
- Lower back pain
- Temporomandibular joint issues (TMJ)
- High blood pressure
- Obsessive compulsive behaviors
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Attention-deficit hyperactivity (ADHD)
- Post-traumatic stress (PTSD)
- Physical injury
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Raynaud’s syndrome
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
MA, LPC, LMHC,
Clinical Psychophysiologist and
Behavioral Health Specialist
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