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The Benefits of Neurotherapy with Insomnia and Sleep Disorders

Ah, sleep. It’s that thing you are supposed to be doing when you are lying in bed at night. Sleep deprivation is so common today that the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now considers it to be a public health epidemic.  The American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society have concluded that adults should be sleeping a minimum of seven hours per night to stay healthy. If you are getting less than those magical seven hours, you could be at risk. When we do not get enough sleep we feel mental effects immediately. Those effects often include: having a harder time concentrating and making decisions, headaches, memory impairments and slowed reaction times.  Longer term effects of sleep deprivation can affect: your moods, the heart, blood sugar levels, the immune system, metabolism, physical appearance, and your relationships.

Sleep challenges include:

  • Insomnia- difficult falling asleep; difficulty maintaining sleep
  • Deregulated sleep patterns/cycles (circadian rhythms)
  • Difficulty waking from sleep
  • Difficulty getting to bed
  • Not feeling rested after sleep
  • Sleeping too long
  • Physically restless sleep
  • Nightmares
  • Bedwetting (nocturnal enuresis)
  • Sleepwalking
  • Restless leg syndrome- leg discomfort or sleep causing movement and arousal
  • Bruxism- teeth grinding during sleep
  • Sleep terrors- abrupt arousal with intense fear, difficulty to awaken, no dream recall or memory of event
  • Narcolepsy- loss of the brain’s ability to regulate sleep-wake cycles

Sleep is a function of the brain! Neurotherapy often helps these problems because it improves brain regulation. Research in neuroscience has shown us that individuals with sleep difficulties and disorders often have a dysregulation of important brainwaves. QEEG (Brain Mapping) can be utilized to help assess brain function that is contributing to sleep difficulties. Once this pattern is identified, neurofeedback can be utilized to retrain the brain to increase and decrease brainwave patterns. Retraining the brain often leads to the normalization of sleep for many individuals. However, sleep is complex and can involve multiple body systems. Although neurofeedback is very helpful in most cases, some cases do not respond as effectively.

Contact us today to find out how we may be able to help with insomnia or other sleep disorders.

Resources for the Benefits of Neurotherapy with Insomnia and Sleep

  • Bell, J. S. (1979). The use of EEG theta biofeedback in the treatment of a patient with sleep-onset insomnia. Biofeedback & Self Regulation, 4(3), 229–236.
  • Berner, I., Schabus, M., Wienerroither, T., & Klimesch, W. (2006). The significance of sigma neurofeedback training on sleep spindles and aspects of declarative memory. Applied Psychophysiology & Biofeedback, 31(2), 97–114.
  • Buckelew, S., Degood, D., Taylor. J., (2013). Neuroflexibilty and sleep onset insomnia among college students: Implication for neurotherapy. Journal of Neurotherapy.
  • Hoedlmoser, K., Pecherstorfer, T., Gruber, E., Anderer, P., Doppelmayr, M., Klimesch, W., & Schabus, M. (2008). Instrumental conditioning of human sensorimotor rhythm (12–15 Hz) and its impact on sleep as well as declarative learning. Sleep, 31(10), 1401–1408.
  • Hammond, D. C (2012). Neurofeedback treatment of restless legs syndrome and periodic leg movements in sleep. Journal of Neurotherapy.
  • Feinstein, B., Sterman, M. B., & MacDonald, L. R. (1974). Effects of sensorimotor rhythm training on sleep. Sleep Research, 3, 134.
  • Sterman, M. B., Howe, R. D., & Macdonald, L. R. (1970). Facilitation of spindle-burst sleep by conditioning of electroencephalographic activity while awake. Science, 167, 1146–1148.
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