Treatment

Why biofeedback would help this problem: Children with this disorder have very specific physiological problems, which can be seen in their brain wave patterns. For example, hyperkinetic kids with concentration problems produce too much Theta wave forms (4-8 Hz) and too little Beta wave forms in some parts of the brain. SMR (sensorimotor rhythm) EEG 12 - 15 Hz is increased with inhibited movement.

People who do neurofeedback generally feel that the parts of the brain generating the abnormal proportions of brainwaves can be taught to function normally by teaching the brain to produce the correct (normal) proportions of brainwaves. Theoretically, the more normal the brainwaves are, the more normally the child should behave. Thus, the treatment's success is proportional to how well the child learns to normalize his or her brainwaves.

Children who are successfully trained to increase SMR show decreased activity levels. Successful neurofeedback training to decrease Theta while increasing Beta results in increased attention span and increased ability to learn math.

The training almost always takes place in a therapist's office. Sensors are pasted onto the scalp over the parts of the child's brain, which are to be trained. The sensors are connected to a computer, which runs a special training program. The program usually appears in the guise of a videogame. The videogame's progress or simply continuation is dependent upon the child producing the desired proportion of brain waves. The treatment may take 30 to 50 or more sessions for effects to be apparent and lasting.

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