Can We Use a Biofeedback Technique to Cure Anxiety?

Biofeedback, which was once upon a time known as a “fringe” therapy, has come a long way. Today, its benefits are accepted by a large number of professionals.

This technique utilizes visual and auditory feedback to help people recognize the physical symptoms caused by anxiety and stress, such as rapidly escalating heart rate, body temperature, muscle tension, etc.

With the help of biofeedback therapy, people can learn how to make their body and mind relaxed to battle against the symptoms of anxiety. This therapy focuses on making subtle changes in the body to bring positive outcomes. To reduce anxiety and stress, somebody functions must be controlled, such as:

  • Blood circulation
  • Blood pressure
  • Heart rate
  • Muscle tension
  • Pain perception

The Association for Applied Psychology and Biofeedback has defined biofeedback as a science-backed method that enables people to improve their health by amending their psychological activities. With the help of measurement tools, users can get the right information about their body functions.

Information, received from the measurement tools, blended with changes in the thinking process, emotions, and behavior, may help one receive desired physiological improvements as well. Gradually, these improvements would be steadily continued even without the intervention of the tools.

Biofeedback is categorized into multiple types, such as respiratory, heart rate variability, galvanic skin response, thermal, neurofeedback, electromyography biofeedback, etc. Each type has unique benefits.

For instance, respiratory biofeedback helps in improving breathing while heart rate variability helps in maintaining a balanced heart rate.

How does it work?

Biofeedback is more like training than a treatment. Coupled with training and some healthy practices, it can be utilized to develop new skills that may enable people to perform better in their struggle against anxiety.

Each session may take 30 to 60 minutes. Some courses include four to six sessions while some other courses may include eight to ten sessions; it depends on the severity of the issue a patient is experiencing and some other factors, such as:

  • How the patient is responding to the therapy
  • The condition that is being treated
  • Goals of the treatment

How the treatment goes on?

  • Specific areas of the patient’s body will be connected to the electrical sensors
  • Other sides of the electrical sensors will be connected to a device that will give feedback on the patient’s physical responses
  • During the session, the therapist will help the patient perform different exercises that engage meditation, breathing, visualization, and relaxation tricks.
  • After performing the above-mentioned activities, the patient will get the information on his/her physical responses from the connected measurement device.

To leverage most benefits of biofeedback therapy, the therapist will need the patient’s active participation. For even better results, the patient should regularly practice the exercises in each training session.

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Significant features of biofeedback include:

  • It is non-invasive
  • It may go well along with other treatments
  • The therapy helps in controlling emotions

Bottom line

If you are considering biofeedback therapy for yourself or your loved ones, you may start by consulting your physicians; they can refer to a reliable and qualified practitioner.

This therapy is an option that may help you gain mastery over controlling your physical responses and behaviors. Moreover, it can make you feel in charge; it may also help you improve your health conditions and mental state.

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