Article 1 Ever wondering how to improve cognitive functioning of ASD? Basic cognitive function impairment in autism spectrum disorder can be reduced through neurofeedback treatment including cognitive, social and attention domains. Source: Mekkawy, L. (2021). Efficacy of neurofeedback as a treatment modality for children in the autistic spectrum. Bulletin of the National Research Centre, 45(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s42269-021-00501-5 Retrieved from: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s42269-021-00501-5
Article 2 ASD children are lacking sociability, they tend to avoid eyes contact and refuse to connect with the world. Appropriate brain responses, behaviour and emotions were linked during social interactions and thus resulted in significant symptom reduction for children with ASD. Source: Friedrich, E. V., Sivanathan, A., Lim, T., Suttie, N., Louchart, S., Pillen, S., & Pineda, J. A. (2015). An effective neurofeedback intervention to improve social interactions in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 45(12), 4084–4100. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-015-2523-5 Retrieved from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26210513/
Article 3 To improve social interaction in ASD children, training their mirror neurons is utmost important. The findings of strong correlations between behavioural improvements and activation changes specifically in these brain regions (human mirror neuron system) support the use of mu-rhythm neurofeedback training to improve clinical outcomes for individuals on the autism spectrum. ** human mirror neuron system (hMNS) is a potential neurobiological substrate for many aspects of human social cognition, particularly those directly relevant to the behavioural and cognitive deficits observed in ASD. Source: Datko, M., Pineda, J. A., Müller, R., & Wallace, M. (2017). Positive effects of neurofeedback on autism symptoms correlate with brain activation during imitation and observation. European Journal of Neuroscience, 47(6). https://doi.org/10.1111/ejn.13551 Retrieved from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/314133941_Positive_effects_of_neurofeedback_on_autism_symptoms_correlate_with_brain_activation_during_imitation_and_observation
Article 4 ASD children can be trained to minimize their ASD symptoms and help them to have a better socializing skill. Several case studies using QEEG and neurofeedback with individuals diagnosed with ASD have reported significant clinical symptomatic improvements for communication, socialization, anxiety, attention and even medication reduction or elimination. Source: Robert, C., Michael, L., & Thomas, E. M. (2010). Neurofeedback for Autistic Spectrum Disorder: A review of the literature. Appl Psychophysiol Biofeedback, 35, 83–105. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10484-009-9117-y Retrieved from: https://europepmc.org/article/med/19856096
Article 5 Training ASD children’s brain can bring more benefits to themselves in improving their functioning. Reciprocal social interactions, communication skills, set-shifting skills improved after neurofeedback treatment. Results suggest that neurofeedback treatment has the potential to become an important and prominent intervention for children with ASD. Source: Kouijzer, M. E. J., van Schie, H. T., de Moor, J. M. H., Gerrits, B. J. L., & Buitelaar, J. K. (2010). Neurofeedback treatment in autism. Preliminary findings in behavioural, cognitive and neurophysiological functioning. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 4, 386-399. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rasd.2009.10.007 Retrieved from: https://www.brainmaster.com/software/pubs/brain/Kouijzer_2010_NFB_Autism.pdf
Article 6 One of the waves in our brain acts as a key to help ASD children initiate socialization. Our findings showed that the implementation of neurofeedback sessions improved Theta brainwave, which leads to better social communication. Source: Hemmati, S., Vameghi, R., Sajedi, F., Gharib, M., Pourmohammadreza-Tajrishi, M., & Teymori, R. (2016). The effect of neurofeedback on brain waves in children with Autism spectrum disorders. Iranian Rehabilitation Journal, 14(3), 133-138. https://doi.org/10.18869/nrip.irj.14.3.133 Retrieved from: http://irj.uswr.ac.ir/article-1-563-en.pdf
Article 7 Tremendous improvement showed in ASD children after neurofeedback training Improvements achieved through neurofeedback training include increases social and daily living skills, as well as communication and relationship advances. Source: Coben, R., & Myers, T. E. (2010). The relative efficacy of connectivity guided and symptom-based EEG biofeedback for autistic disorders. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 35(1), 13-23. doi:10.1007/s10484-009-9102-5 Retrieved from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19649702/
Article 8 Neurofeedback training improves not only social issues in ASD children, but also other common emotional and behavioral management issues. Neurofeedback has shown promise in improving the negative symptoms associated with autism such as repetitive behaviours, aggression, problems with communication and social ineptness. Source: Akhawan, R. (2018). The efficacy of neurofeedback in the treatment of Autism [Walden Dissertations and Doctoral Studies]. ScholarWorks. Retrieved from: https://scholarworks.waldenu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=7243&context=dissertations
Article 9 The use of mu rhythms in neurofeedback training is prominent in reducing ASD symptoms. The results showed that symptoms in children with ASD have been reduced through the use of neurofeedback by targeting training to the mirror neuron system (MNS) via modulation of EEG mu rhythms. Source: Pineda, J. A., Carrasco, K., Datko, M., Pillen, S., & Schalles, M. (2014). Neurofeedback training produces normalization in behavioural and electrophysiological measures of high-functioning autism. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, 369(1644), 20130183. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2013.0183 Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4006184/
Article 11 The social cognition issues in ASD can be reduced by training their brain. Study providing moderate evidence for improvement in social cognition deficit following neurofeedback training with theta/ beta protocol in ASD population. Source: Kumari, M., & Sharma, A. (2020). Neurofeedback Training for Social Cognitive Deficits: Systematic Review. International Journal of Online and Biomedical Engineering (IJOE), 16(10), 151. https://doi.org/10.3991/ijoe.v16i10.15923
Article 12 Neurofeedback improves their cognition skills that they are able to picking up communication skills. After neurofeedback therapy, the patient began to use eight different single words, and his social responsiveness became significantly better. He demonstrated an increased ability to follow instructions, and his attention span increased. Source: Eroglu, G., & Ekici, B. (2020). Neurofeedback improves EEG complexity and social interaction in a boy with autism: A case report. Journal of Surgery and Medicine. https://doi.org/10.28982/josam.638667 Retrieved from: https://dergipark.org.tr/en/download/article-file/1015398
Article 13 ASD children got to improve their language domain, including understanding and communicating after neurofeedback training. The participant showed observable improvement in language comprehension and expression according to the subscale of the Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC). Source: Mutang, J. A., Chua, B. S., Madlan, L. W., Bullare Bahari, M. I., & Soidi, T. (2018). Neurofeedback training to improve comprehension and expression of ASD child: A case study. International Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics, 118(24), 1314-3395.
Article 14 Will all the improvement have shown in my ASD children back to square one after the neurofeedback training had been terminated? How stable and long-lasting is the effect of neurofeedback training? The enduring effects of neurofeedback have been follow-up by researchers after the treatment period has ended one year. Analysis revealed there is a significant increase of all executive functions, including cognitive flexibility, planning skills, inhibition and attention skills. Another study also reported that there is no loss of nonverbal communication and general communication. Source: Coben, R. (2013). Neurofeedback for autistic disorders: emerging empirical evidence. In: Casanova, M. F., El-Baz, A. S., & Suri, J. S. (Eds.). Imaging the brain in autism. Springer, 107–134. Retrieved from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/289951696_Neurofeedback_for_Autistic_Disorders_Emerging_Empirical_Evidence
Article 15 The improvement is significant and prominent in ASD children after neurofeedback training. The studies have confirmed that there is a significant improvement in sustained attention as well as in speech/language communication, sociability, health/ physical behaviour subscales. Source: Hurt, E., Arnold, L. E., & Lofthouse, N. (2014). Quantitative EEG neurofeedback for the treatment of paediatric Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Learning Disorders, and Epilepsy. Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 23(3), 465 486. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chc.2014.02.001 Retrieved from: https://www.childpsych.theclinics.com/article/S1056-4993(14)00023-6/abstract
Pills are not the only way to manage your child’s inappropriate or maladaptive behaviors. Neurofeedbacktherapyis a safe, non-invasive, alternative option for the treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and adolescents. In November 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics approved biofeedback and neurofeedback as a Level 1 or “best support” treatment option for children suffering from ADHD. For parents looking for an effective, non-drug treatment of ADHD, neurofeedback is one worth serious consideration.
It is estimated that two million children in the United States are struggling with the symptoms of ADHD, which are inattention or inattention combined with hyperactivity. Common indicators of ADHD with hyperactivity are:
feeling restless, fidgeting, and/or squirming
Impulsive speech and blurting answers
Having difficulty remaining patient and quiet
Excessive talking and moving, constantly in motion
Indicators of inattention type include:
Inability to focus
Carelessness with schoolwork and other tasks
Very easily distracted
Losing or forgetting important items
Commonly do not complete tasks once started and bounce from one activity to the next
Neurofeedback Treatment for ADHDNeurofeedback trains children to become more aware of their physiological responses and how to gain control of the brain’s frontal lobe, which is the executive functioning center. Electroencephalography (EEG) neurofeedback is a specific technique under biofeedback therapy, and it is the recording of electrical activity within the cells of the scalp. EEG neurofeedback focuses on the central nervous system and the brain’s activity in order to give moment-to-moment information.
Children with ADHD have higher rates of EEG abnormalities compared to children without ADHD, such as higher theta wave rhythms (drowsiness), lower sensorimotor rhythms (movement control), and lower beta waves (attention and memory processes). Neurofeedback provides audio and visual interpretations of these brain waves, and children learn how to maintain the appropriate levels for functioning.
During a neurofeedback session, EEG sensors are situated on the scalp. Specific brain wave activity is then detected, amplified, and recorded. The information is instantaneously fed back to the therapist and client on a screen. The therapist informs the client what they are observing, and trains them on how to control the brain activity so that it reaches the desired range. With the help of a video game program, the child learns to maintain low activity of the delta waves and an increase in beta waves, or the game will not continue to play. With this, the child exercises the brain and increases his focus and attention.
It also has been studied and reported that the brains of children with ADHD are lacking the regulation from the frontal region, allowing the mid-brain to quickly react without a type of checking system. Neurofeedback restores the strength of the frontal region of the brain, and builds a better connection between the mid-brain and forebrain, allowing focus, attention, impulses, and emotional reactions to become manageable. Children build memory for how they were able to achieve the desired results within the sessions and use it outside of the sessions to produce lasting results.
Methylphenidate (Ritalin) is a psychostimulant drug commonly used for the treatment of ADHD in children and adolescents. Research suggests that neurofeedback is an equally effective treatment. Children are typically given three doses of 10 mg Ritalin per day on school days. Neurofeedback training is shown to be a favorable option that provides the same results as medication. For parents who prefer other options aside from medication, neurofeedback is a non-invasive, safe, effective, and long-lasting treatment option. Typically, the child will participate in 10 to 20 sessions or more depending on severity of symptoms, and each session lasts 30 to 60 minutes.
References Arns, M., de Ridder, S., Strehl, U., Breteler, M., & Coenen, A. (2009). Efficacy of neurofeedback treatment in ADHD: the effects on inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity: a meta analysis.Clinical EEG and Neuroscience, 40(3), 180-189. Duric, N., Assmus, J., Gundersen, D., & Elgen, I. (2012). Neurofeedback for the treatment of children and adolescents with ADHD: a randomized and controlled clinical trial using parental reports.BMC Psychiatry, 12(1), 107. American Academy of Pediatrics report:Evidence-based Child and Adolescent Psychosocial Interventions, released November 2012
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