At BiofeedbackWORKS in Virginia we take the saying “It’s all in your head” seriously. It is – just ask those who suffer from migraines.
Migraines and tension headaches can be caused by a variety of issues: stress, chemical toxicity, hormonal imbalances, muscle tension and/or genetics, to name just a few. Migraines can develop at any age and can exist indefinitely without appropriate intervention.
Conventional interventions (e.g., medications and Botox injections) may have short-term results as well as negative consequences. Rebound effect (i.e., migraine recurrence upon discontinuation of such treatments) is a frequent result. This is because these approaches may have a destabilizing influence on the brain, causing even more discomfort once their effects on pain receptors have worn off. Also, the complexity of the different origins of migraines has resulted in shortcomings in how they have been treated by traditional methods.
Just as there can be many causes for migraines, here at BiofeedbackWORKS we employ a wide range of treatment modalities to provide long lasting relief for our clients. We include both neurofeedback and general biofeedback training in our treatment approach to migraines. Since no single problem causes migraines, we recognize that no single solution may cure them.
A noninvasive approach such as neurofeedback training includes: multichannel Z-score, S-Loretta, LENS, HEG (hemoencephalography), and pRoshi. These modalities are used to teach the brain to react more fluidly to internal and external stimuli as well as to adjust as needed. The brain, therefore, learns to adapt to variable environments. The result, for the client, is a substantial decrease or elimination of pain.
The cause of the migraine’s onset, its duration and/or symptomatology does not inhibit the brain from being helped by neurofeedback training. We adapt treatment plans to customize training to allow for individual needs and tolerances. To do this we employ the Quantitative Electroencephalogram (qEEG or quantitative brain map). This gives us a picture of a client’s brain wave activity, so we can pinpoint imbalances that perpetuate migraine. We then tailor our protocols to target those specific areas.
Something that makes us stand out from other neurofeedback treatment programs is our inclusion of General Biofeedback in the client’s treatment plan. In addition to training the brain, we train the peripheral physiology of the body. Sensors are used to measure heart rate variability, skin perspiration, muscle tension, breathing patterns and body temperature. This intervention helps the individual to have control of his or her body’s responses and also aids in pain relief.
Migraine symptoms can be triggered by a wide array of stimuli including but not limited to a shift in biometric pressure, light sensitivity, sound, smell, medicine, stress, etc. Neurofeedback and general biofeedback training can help the brain stabilize and better manage its response to triggers that cause pain and, in many cases, stop the pain altogether.
While triggers can be identified, they cannot always be avoided. Neurofeedback and general biofeedback training increase the brain’s stamina to tolerate environments that once caused migraines, which can mean the difference of being able to go to school, go to work, keep a job, participate in family activities, or simply function in today’s world.