Anxiety attacks are happening more and more to kids these days. Imagine the stress of earning you scout badges, doing your homework, and competing in the Pinewood Derby while having family problems at home.
Biofeedback is a treatment for many anxiety conditions that does not involve drugs or invasive operations. Anxiety Treatment With Biofeedback has helped millions of people with different anxiety conditions improve their lives and become healthier. Many people suffering from the conditions that can be treated with biofeedback are sick of taking strong drugs with uncomfortable side effects. Some people would rather be sick and anxious than take any more medications. Without other treatment options, these people will suffer needlessly.
What Are The Anxiety Disorders That Biofeedback Can Help?
There are several different anxiety conditions that people suffer. Though they each have unique symptoms and adverse effects on sufferer’s lives, they have some symptoms in common. The most common anxiety disorders are:
- There is a generalized anxiety disorder called GAD
- The panic disorder
- There are specific phobias such as being afraid to fly on a plane.
- OCD is short for an obsessive-compulsive disorder that can have a person counting everything, washing hands obsessively, and other obsessive behaviors.
- PTSD has been in the news a lot as our brave soldiers come home suffering from their time at war.
- Then, there is SAD or the social anxiety disorder that affects people in social situations.
In all of these anxiety disorders, a person’s ability to function comfortably in society is affected. People may tell them to calm down, stop worrying, or relax but they are unable to. The anxiety they feel has no off button. They can not control it themselves. If left untreated, these anxiety disorders can become deadly. Anxiety Treatment with Biofeedback may be their only hope for a normal, happy life.
In all of these conditions a behavioral loop forms starting with a worried thought, going to a physiological response, and then more extremely worried thoughts, and more serious, uncomfortable responses in the body and mind. What causes this dangerous loop to begin? It can be many things such as environmental causes, genetics, too much stimulus, personal experience, and more. A person can go to a movie or dance and be affected by the loudness of the music, or the movement of dancers. A thunderstorm or low flying plane can set off anxiety. Any event that causes the person to feel overwhelmed and experience too much anxiety can cause adverse symptoms.
What Happens During A Panic Episode?
Symptoms vary from person to person, they may feel nauseous and want to vomit or they may want to escape quickly. They may get a bad headache or feel suddenly exhausted. Some people will feel out of control like their head is in the clouds. They will feel scared and tense. What causes this response? These people are not imagining their discomfort, it can be caused by things such as:
- Increased heart rate
- Cold and clammy hands due to changed blood circulation and overall skin temperature changes
- A loss of metabolic activity in the frontal lobe of the brain
- Rapid and shallow breathing
- Changes in the EEG readings because of higher activity of hi-beta waves in parts of the brain.
- The adrenaline rush due to the fight or flight mechanism
All of these and more actual physical and mental changes due to anxiety can be harmful to a person’s health.
Hope For Anxiety Sufferers.
Treating patients with biofeedback has become a promising new solution for many patients. Managing the symptoms of anxiety can lead to curing it. Though for many, the anxiety never goes away, many have learned to control their symptoms. With therapy involving biofeedback, patients are taught to properly respond to anxiety to control it. The equipment used to help a person helps them view the physiological responses to stress. The noninvasive instruments use programming to allow the person to be aware of symptoms and learn effective ways to manage them and even learn relaxation skills. As treatment goes on, the patient learns to control the brain’s brainwave levels and activity and achieve a focused, calm state of mind.
In addition to anxiety disorders, biofeedback methods can be used to treat people with conditions such as chronic pain, asthma, joint disorders, intestinal motility, Raynaud’s disease, and irritable bowel syndrome. It has also been used to help people with headaches, dysmenorrhea, epilepsy, and hypertension. As time goes on, other conditions may be helped also. Studies have found biofeedback to be a very useful adjunct to treatment of physiologic hyperarousal-both chronic and episodic and patients who want to learn to reduce fearful triggers of anticipation with behavior/ cognitive behavior therapies. Behavioral treatments such as this can also involve recognizing negative thinking and developing better assessment skills for life events. Biofeedback should be used with other therapies with well trained medical professionals to achieve the best results. Also, every treatment plan should be designed for the unique individual seeking help. One person may suffer from more than one anxiety disorder and different people have different anxiety triggers to deal with. It should also be recognized that biofeedback treatment is an ongoing plan. It takes time and repetition to retrain our brains and our responses to different events. But, for a person who feared much in life and felt ill most of the time, getting relief is worth all of the time and effort involved in the treatment. It would be worth a patient with many different emotional, anxiety and chronic pain type conditions to ask about the possibility of trying biofeedback therapy.
Check out the video below. This is one way to treat children with anxiety disorders. And it’s totally non-invasive.