As the body-mind connection becomes better understood in the improvement and maintenance of overall health, biofeedback therapy is being considered more often as a successful CAM, or Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
Biofeedback therapy is not for a passive patient, as it requires an active role in the entire process from start to finish.
What is Biofeedback Therapy?
Biofeedback is relatively easy to understand. “Bio” is your total body, and “feedback” is the data that is revealed and collected through sensored sessions. The therapist is much like an athletic trainer, first explaining and teaching, giving you exercises to practice, and then revealing the hoped-for “reward” of better overall health.
Types of Biofeedback
Western medicine tends to not only separate psychological and physical health but goes even further by separating physical treatments by the various systems of the body: circulatory, respiratory, muscular, nervous, cardiovascular, skeletal, immunological, and more.
Biofeedback therapy illustrates the integration of all of these systems and how your ability to control one area can have a significant effect on others. Some of the most common biofeedback data reviewed are:
- Heart rate
- Muscle tension/contraction
- Brain waves
How Does Biofeedback Therapy Work?
A clinical setting for biofeedback therapy will most often use the application of sticky and temporary electrodes, like with an EKG. This is perhaps the most structured therapy, as a technician guides you through different physical and mental tests. They will review the incoming data with you as they make suggestions for what a baseline level should be for optimal health, and how you can achieve it.
There are other wearable devices for biofeedback therapy, like a Holter Monitor for cardiac monitoring. This type of biofeedback therapy is helpful if the person is diligent about keeping a log during the feedback period to pin down stimuli that create unhealthy heart rates or other anomalies.
Believe it or not, even most smartphones have biofeedback therapy capabilities. You can measure and track your heart rate, stress level, and even oxygen saturation through the use of an LED light sensor.
The Benefits of Biofeedback Therapy
One of the greatest things about biofeedback is that it can be done without the use of pharmaceuticals. Through dedication and practice, a person may be able to learn enough about their body’s responses and how to control them that they can, possibly, reduce or eliminate other medications. You must always consult your doctor before changing any medical practices.
The Summit Malibu Difference
At Summit Malibu, we incorporate many different types of training and treatments to provide you or your loved one with the most comprehensive and successful mental health treatment program possible.