You Can Fight Depression Naturally and Without the Use of Drugs
In modern society, depression has been regarded as a “chemical imbalance” and treated primarily with medications that increase or decrease specific chemicals in the brain. However, it is far from clear that medication is an effective way to treat depression. Further, these drugs have numerous and often serious side effects including increased fatigue, weight gain, constipation, dizziness, anxiety, drowsiness, blurred vision, strange dreams, and nausea. One of the most frequent complaints about anti-depressants their tendency to ‘numb’ sexual sensations, and reduce or eliminate the ability to have an orgasm.
From the point of view of neurology, depression is a brainwave imbalance. Chronically depressed people frequently exhibit a distinctive brain wave pattern which can be normalized with brain retraining. Research has shown that the brain of a chronically depressed person frequently exhibits lower overall brainwave amplitudes. The right hemisphere of a depressed person’s brain shows too much beta activity – it is running a bit too fast. The left hemisphere is running a little slow showing too much alpha wave activity. In other words, the right side of the brain (loosely associated with emotions) needs to be calmed down, and the left side of the brain (loosely associated with logic and rational thinking), needs to be stimulated.
Depression is a “slow-wave” disorder, which means that those suffering from chronic depression tend to exhibit lower Beta brainwave levels. Depression is also linked to inadequate levels of Serotonin. Brain retraining has been shown through scientific research to increase the levels of Serotonin in the brain. Brain retraining is a safe, natural and effective method to treat chronic depression.
Research Supports LSN’s Effectiveness in Alleviating Depression
NeuroAdvantage™ offers a number of light & sound neurotherapy (LSN) programs designed to decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety as part of an overall treatment plan. Numerous clinical researchers have found that LSN is a robust treatment that is effective in facilitating profound relaxation and meditative states (e.g., Freedman & Marks, 1965; Richardson & McAndrew, 1990; Thomas & Siever, 1989; Williams & West, 1975).
In 2009, researchers Cantor and Stevens (2009) found that improvement in depressive symptoms only occurred during active LSN treatment with patients averaging a 70.9% decrease in depressive symptoms. LSN patients also maintained improvement after stopping active treatment when re-assessed one month later averaging an additional 33% decrease in depressive symptoms. This finding supports the observation that LSN often generates enduring effects.
Beginning in February 2008, NeuroAdvantage and Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches initiated a series of studies evaluating the Trainer’s effectiveness for substance abuse clients who also exhibited significant levels of depression and anxiety. These early studies validate the Trainer’s potential to improve outcomes for those suffering from depression and anxiety.
LSN was administered in a group therapy format using the NeuroAdvantage™ Trainer’s “Mood Lifter” program five afternoons per week for two weeks. The NeuroAdvantage group also listened to these coaching CDs during their LSN sessions:
- Mindfulness Meditation
- Deep Relaxation
- Step 1: Acceptance of Powerlessness
We found that the NeuroAdvantage group improved the most on each outcome measure. On average, their depression and hopelessness scores decreased by 75% while their self-esteem scores increased by 80%.
Shown below is the improvement exhibited by those subjects who were “greatly improved” as a result of the treatment:
The clients consistently reported feeling a sense of inner calmness and serenity following their NeuroAdvantage sessions. An analysis of clients’ self-reported data found:
- 9 of 11 reported improved sleep;
- 6 of 11 had pleasant dissociative experiences during their sessions (e.g., sense of floating)
- 6 of 11 reported increased focus and concentration following the sessions;
- 6 of 11 reported decreased anxiety symptoms;
- 6 of 11 found they had increased patience and were less irritable with others following the sessions; and
- 4 of 11 reported decreased or the disappearance of pain following the sessions.
NeuroAdvantage Programs to Combat Chronic Depression
Our programs for depression are specifically designed to reduce activity in the right brain hemisphere, while increasing activity in the left, giving you more control over yourself and reducing irrational thought patterns. These programs will help you to slow down you’re the right side (emotional) of your brain while accelerating the activity in the left side (rational) of your brain, helping your thought patterns to return to normality. Repeated three or more times per week, these Trainer sessions have been shown to have the cumulative effect of enhancing overall wellbeing as well as improving the targeted areas of brain functioning.
For maximum effect, use the NeuroAdvantage™ Trainer with the programs we have designed to help you relax and get to sleep, as well as those designed to foster awaking alert and clear-headed rather than sluggish. Your NeuroAdvantage™ Coach can work with you to determine the most effective programs and schedules.
We have also developed the audio programs for mental concentration, memory and focus. These programs can be used with the Trainer, or by themselves.
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Cantor, DS & Stevens S (2009). QEEG correlates of auditory-visual entrainment treatment efficacy of refractory depression. Journal of Neurotherapy, 13: 100-108.
Freedman, S. & Marks, P. (1965). Visual imagery produced by rhythmic photic stimulation: Personality correlates and phenomenology. British Journal of Psychology, 56: 95-112.
Golden, R.N. et al (2005). The efficacy of light therapy in the treatment of mood disorders: A review and meta-analysis of the evidence. American Journal of Psychiatry, 162: 656–662.
Leonard, K.N., Telch, M.J., & Harrington P.J. (1999). Dissociation in the laboratory: A comparison of strategies. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 37: 49-61.
Richardson, A. & McAndrew, F. (1990). The effects of photic stimulation and private self-consciousness on the complexity of visual imagination imagery. British Journal of Psychology, 81: 381-394.
Thomas, N. & Siever, D. (1989). The effect of repetitive audio/visual stimulation on skeletomotor and vasomotor activity. Hypnosis: 4th European Congress at Oxford. London: Whurr Publishers.
Trivedi MH, Rush AJ, Wisniewski SR, et al. (2006). Evaluation of outcomes with citalopram for depression using measurement-based care in STAR*D: Implications for clinical practice. American Journal of Psychiatry, 163:28–40.
Weiner, M., MciLveen, J., Abrams, M. & Pigott, E. (March 2008). Neurotherapy as an adjunctive treatment for substance abuse Disorders: A pilot study. Therapeutic & Alcohol/Drug Interventions Conference, Las Vegas.
Williams, P. & West, M. (1975). EEG responses to photic stimulation in persons experienced in meditation. Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology, 39: 519-522.
Wolitzky-Taylor, K.B. & Telch, M.J. (2007). Placebo-controlled Trial Investigating Self-Administered Treatment for Pathological Worry. Poster presented at the World Congress of Cognitive and Behavioral Therapies, Barcelona, Spain.
Wolitzky-Taylor, K.B. Personal Communication. March 30, 2009.
DISCLAIMER: The NeuroAdvantage™ Trainer is not a substitute for medical diagnoses or treatments and is designed to be used under the guidance of a trained healthcare professional. Information published on this website is the property of NeuroAdvantage, LLC and cannot be duplicated without permission.