THE BIOFEEDBACK

"Biofeedback is a treatment technique in which people are trained to improve their health by using signals from their own bodies. Physical therapists use biofeedback to help stroke victims regain movement in paralyzed muscles. Psychologists use it to help tense and anxious clients learn to relax. Specialists in many different fields use biofeedback to help their patients cope with pain (NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF MENTAL HEALTH)

A person's internal bodily functions can be detected, with far greater sensitivity and precision than a person can alone.

Specialists who provide biofeedback training range from psychiatrists and psychologists to dentists, internists, nurses, and physical therapists. Most rely on many other techniques in addition to biofeedback.

Patients usually are taught some form of relaxation exercise. Some learn to identify the circumstances that trigger their symptoms. They may also be taught how to avoid or cope with these stressful events. Most are encouraged to change their habits, and some are trained in special techniques for gaining such self-control.

WHAT IS BIOFEEDBACK USED FOR?

Biofeedback is used today to assist healthcare professionals in treating conditions such as:

  • Migraine headaches, tension headaches, and many other types of pain
  • Disorders of the digestive system
  • High blood pressure and its opposite, low blood pressure
  • Cardiac arrhythmias (abnormalities, sometimes dangerous, in the rhythm of the heartbeat)
  • Raynaud's disease (a circulatory disorder that causes uncomfortably cold hands)
  • Epilepsy
  • Paralysis and other movement disorders

Biofeedback is not a cure or does not make a person healthy, it acts as a tool only to assist (health care professionals) with the treatments of certain conditions.