When the devastating news is delivered to a parent that their child has Autism, one of the first questions asked is “what do we do?”. One of the first things some doctors do is write a prescription for a medication. While there is no cure for Autism, and there is no medication that specifically treats Autism itself, there are medications that can treat some of the symptoms of autism; depression, mood swings, obsessive compulsive behaviors, and hyperactivity. A lot of these medications of side effects themselves, so one is left with the thought “is this really worth it?” Though not often spoken about, there are other effective treatments available.
There is a non-medicinal, non-invasive, effective and safe option available. The option is Neurotherapy.
What is Neurotherapy?
Neurotherapy, also called Neuro Feedback Training or Brainwave Biofeedback, is used to attempt to change the dysfunctional brainwave patterns of the autistic child towards normal. Research and clinical practice indicates that this approach can improve cognitive deficits, concentration, impulse control, depression, anxiety and seizure disorders. Neurotherapy is only used with high functioning children with Autism to improve attention deficits and Learning difficulties. (via)
How does Neurotherapy Work?
Neurotherapy can be compared to Physical Therapy for the brain. Typically, sensors are placed on the scalp and on each ear. Then, high-tech computer screens display brain waves within seconds of them occuring. Usually we cannot control our brainwaves, but when we are able to see them, it makes us more conscious of them. With practice it becomes commonplace to be able to control one’s brainwaves into a healthier pattern.
Is Neurotherapy Effective?
As with anything, you have to look at it on a case by case basis. Because it is specifically targeting the symptoms of Learning Disabilities and attention deficits, it is used with High Functioning Autism patients. In 2009 in collaboration with researchers from Tübingen University (Germany), Radboud University (Nijmegen, the Netherlands), Brainclinics and EEG Resource Institute a meta-analysis was conducted on published research about Neurofeedback treatment in ADHD which concluded that neurofeedback is an ‘Evidence-Based’ treatment for ADHD.