A documentary on neurofeedback as a treatment to ADHD

Sunday 25 March 2018

Is there another treatment possible for ADHD/ADD patients besides using medication or controlling your diet? The documentary "New focus on ADHD", available on , addresses the way neurofeedback successfully can be deployed within the current options for ADHD therapy.

ADHD is one of the most common chronic psychiatric disorders among children. According to current prevalence approximately 6% of the children and young people aged between six and 18 years are suffering from 'Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder' or 'Attention Deficit Disorder', in short ADHD and ADD. These children have significant attention and/or hyperactivity problems and are acting more impulsively than one would consider normal behavior at their age. This lack of focus may result in poor school performance.

The number of children who are taking prescription medications for ADD/ADHD has dramatically grown over the last decades. Are current treatments the only solution to face the challenges of ADHD/ADD, or should we look for alternatives? About 30 to 50 percent of these children diagnosed in childhood, continue to have symptoms into adulthood, such as sleep disorders, migraine of depressions. This shows still much can be improved before we get to the point of an general effective ADHD therapy. Neurofeedback can make an important contribution.

In "New focus on ADHD" experts Else Dahmen and Anke Roijakkers from Brainspa, prof. dr. Kenemans from Utrecht University and Marco Congedo, a neurofeedback research scientist, comment on the current treatments for ADHD. They focus on a specific method, called brain-function training or 'neurofeedback'. Great asset of this therapy is that it addresses the source of the problem. When it works it appears to give a permanent solution, instead of only creating a temporary reduction the symptoms. A former patient and his father explain how the therapy has been beneficial to them.

The documentary is partly English and partly Dutch-spoken, and is online available with both English, Spanish and German subtitles. In future the documentary is planned to be subtitled in more different languages. It is produced at the request of Mind Media B.V. by Way Media and FleischmannFilm, in order to bring attention to non-pharmaceutical solutions for ADHD and ADD. Since the 1980's many studies have investigated the effects of neurofeedback on various symptoms of ADHD/ADD like inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity. Some organizations like the AAPB and ISNR conclude that neurofeedback in that regard can be considered an efficacious and specific treatment.

Even though these results are promising, by no means Mind Media wants to discourage people to use medication as treatment for ADHD. Mind Media does want to show the general public there are non-pharmaceutical solutions for a problem like ADHD/ADD. Neurofeedback is a technology assisted active learning process, requiring dedication and the client's motivation and time. It is not unusual for 20 or more sessions to be required, before an effect takes hold. Similar to the use of medication, there is no 100% guarantee that it will be effective for everyone.

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