About Biofeedback Therapy
When you raise your hand to wave or move your legs to walk, these are controlled movements. Other movements, however, are involuntary, such as the beating of your heart, breathing and body temperature. You don’t have to think about these functions to make them happen because they automatically happen in reaction to your surrounding environment. The nervous system controls these functions.
Biofeedback therapy is used to help you gain control over involuntary functions. It is useful in treating a variety of conditions, including high blood pressure, pain, migraines, incontinence, and addiction. Biofeedback therapy operates on the principle that you can harness the power of your mind and become aware of what’s happening within your body to gain more control over your health. Therefore, biofeedback therapy for addicts can be very effective in treating their addiction.
Biofeedback therapy is a very effective treatment for addiction recovery. This is because when someone discontinues drug use, they experience withdrawal symptoms which create physical stress and heighten involuntary responses. People who are suffering from withdrawal often experience depression, anxiety, restlessness and chronic muscle pain which are the very conditions that are effectively treated with biofeedback therapy.
If you or someone you know is suffering from addiction, it is important that you know your options for treatment for addiction recovery. Biofeedback therapy for addicts is a drug-free method of controlling the body in reaction to your surroundings. You will be able to effectively reduce your stress levels and cope with withdrawal symptoms. The anxiety and negative emotions will be less intense once you use biofeedback therapy treatment for addiction recovery, leading to a positive outcome.
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How Biofeedback Therapy Works
What is understood about how biofeedback therapy works are that it promotes relaxation which is effective in treating a number of conditions and improving health. If you are receiving biofeedback therapy treatment for addiction recovery, you can expect the following during a biofeedback therapy session:
- Electrodes will be attached to your skin
- A monitor which is attached to the electrodes will display your heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, breathing rate and sweating and muscle activity
- Stress responses will be displayed on the monitor and provide you with immediate feedback
- Your biofeedback therapist will help you practice relaxation techniques which you will refine and use to control body functions
Biofeedback therapy is a viable treatment for addiction recovery. Those suffering from addiction also suffer from stress. Biofeedback therapy for addicts can help the addict to control stress levels by practicing relaxation techniques which include:
- Deep breathing – You breathe in fresh air and positive thoughts and exhale to release negative energy
- Progressive muscle relaxation – An effective biofeedback therapy for addicts which allows them to focus on releasing tension in overly tight muscles one muscle group at a time
- Guided imagery to focus the mind – Directing the mind towards soothing and positive images to relax the mind and body
- Mindfulness meditation – Promotes peacefulness by allowing you to release negative thoughts and emotions
These relaxation techniques are an effective treatment for addiction recovery. They help you refocus your thoughts and relax.
Types of Biofeedback
Biofeedback is used to measure different bodily functions to provide useful feedback about each function. During your biofeedback session, your therapist will use the following biofeedback to monitor certain body functions:
- Electromyogram (EMG): Muscle activity and tension are measured. This biofeedback is useful in treating headaches, anxiety, back pain, muscle retraining after an injury and incontinence. It is also useful in treating addiction.
- Thermal: Skin temperature is measured. It is effective in treating headache and Raynaud’s disease.
- Electroencephalography (EEG): These measures brain waves. It can effectively treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and epilepsy.
- Electrodermal Activity (EDA): Sweating activity is measured and this treatment can be useful for treating pain and anxiety.
- Heart Rate Variability (HRA): The heart rate is measured. It can effectively treat a variety of conditions, including irregular heartbeat, anxiety, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma.
You can expect each biofeedback therapy session to last for 30 minutes. You will start to notice the benefits from the biofeedback sessions within about 10 sessions. However, some conditions, such as high blood pressure, can take 20 or more sessions before you see improvement.