The pendulum swings in both directions. The trajectory is determined by how far to the left or to the right the weight is drawn away from the still point (neither from nor towards)- and then the motion starts…… We live in very exciting and groundbreaking times. In terms of the trajectory of the pendulum, I believe we may still see it go full circle in our lifetime.
Let me explain: At the beginning of medical science, it was the stillpoint. The opinion of the general practitioner was all that was. There was no movement away from the mainstream medical opinion or movement towards anything else. The human psyche however, does not accept motionlessness and thus the movement towards the left, away from mainstream approaches, towards alternative medicine, was born. Homeopathy, light therapy, and various forms of energy healing ensued. Consequently, opposing movements to the right of mainstream medicine, followed. Measurements were developed that became more precise and accurate. Specifically the field of neuroscience showed extreme refinements in measurements in the PET scans, SPECT scans, QEEG’s and other technologies. And this is where Neurofeedback fits into the bigger picture: a therapy that embraces and involves the entire trajectory of the pendulum. We work with cutting edge technology that enables us to get precise measurements of electrical activity in the individual brain which we compare to different large databases of brain functioning to make treatment decisions.
And then, on the left route of the pendulum weight, we honour the principles of individualised, personal medicine. We pay special attention to symptoms and effects of treatment and make minute adaptations in treatment plans for optimal outcomes. We consider diet, environmental factors and suggest or provide relaxation exercises for stress management to mention but a few factors related to a personalised approach. We honour the science that is at the foundation of our techniques and we honour the components of the individual of which the sum is always smaller than the whole. We work with what is accurately measurable as well as with the x-factor.
In terms of the Neurotherapy treatment of ADHD, we mostly treat the three presentations (inattentive, hyperactive-impulsive and combined inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive) differently. The selected treatment protocols are more often than not different in placement of the Neurotherpay electrodes on the scalp, and different in the selected frequency bands in brainwaves. The profile of the mainly hyperactive-impulsive presentation of ADHD, is virtually the opposite of the mainly inattentive presentation of ADHD. So we treat them differently.
The hyperactive-impulsive ADHD sufferer will usually receive low frequency training on the right –hand side of the brain (the QEEG results , the symptoms and the therapist mostly concur).This treatment generally has a calming effect which limits the way in which the thoughts jump around from one stimulus to the next. Treatment for the predominantly inattentive sufferer, mostly involves placement on the left-hand side of the brain, at a higher frequency. This treatment has an activating effect. Adaptations are made according to individualised deviations.
The relevance of Neurofeedback as a treatment option for ADHD can no longer be ignored or underestimated. In October 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics, officially rated Neurofeedback as a level 1 treatment for ADHD and as the best support therapy for attention related problems. This conclusion was based on consideration and analysis of three research studies lead by Gevensleben, H, et al ( 2009 ); Levesque, J, et al, (2006) and Beaureguard, M ,et al, (2006).
Stimulant medication , versions of which we have available in South Africa, being Ritalin and Concerta, or Strattera (which is not a stimulant) are no longer the only viable treatment options for ADHD. It remains important, however that the best treatment plan for the particular individual will be devised. It is equally important that no parent of an ADHD sufferer or any adult ADHD sufferer will be pressurised or coerced into following a treatment plan with which they are not comfortable. We ought to own responsibility for our health and make decisions regarding treatment in a concerted and collaborative fashion in interaction with health care professionals with which we feel comfortable.