The Othmer Method and Personalised Brain Training

Neurofeedback is Personalised Brain Training. 

With a qEEG Brain Map, we can find vulnerabilities, strengths and challenges. 

Neurofeedback training helps improve our sense of self, sleep, mood regulation, memory and focus.  

It is an evidence-based, scientifically proven treatment, medication-free and non-invasive.

The process is enjoyable – while watching a movie of choice, we give feedback to our brain by changes in volume and picture size.  Our brain preconsciously adapts its behaviour and learning occurs.   See here how it works.

Personalised Brain Training - The Philosophy

Personalised Brain Training takes a holistic approach to achieving and maintaining mental health and optimal performance. 

With a Kaiser Neuromap, we can identify areas of strength and vulnerability.  

Specifically, we look at functional brain areas.  There are around thirty areas of interest, and we can assess their relative performance both towards new and familiar situations.  

Each brain area governs a part of our performance, identity and social interaction.  

When one or more brain areas are dysrhythmic, that is, not contributing optimally, a vulnerability to certain behavioural patterns emerges.  

When viewed this way, we can obtain a granular picture of a person’s strengths and challenges. 

On the basis of a  qEEG brain map, we can now train the brain with neurofeedback.  Challenges thus become opportunities that can be addressed.  

Neurofeedback training is an enjoyable process – the conscious mind is occupied with watching a movie while preconscious behaviour adapts to the auditory and visual feedback (there is no direct stimulus via the electrodes, they merely measure ongoing brain activity).

Neurofeedback training is an evidence-based, effective and non-invasive treatment. 

 

Neurofeedback Therapy is Forward-Looking.

With neurofeedback training, we show the brain more efficient ways of functioning.  

There are two types of effects:  

 – after a training session, there is generally an improved sense of self, calmness and confidence

 – in general, we have shown the brain a new type of reward – efficient functioning with respect to a particular brain area – and it will gravitate towards situations, projects, people and places that will support this in a virtuous, positive feedback loop

Training success thus depends on our ability to expose ourselves to such new stimuli and free ourselves from external factors that were reinforcing negative conditions.  The brain now knows to discern what is good, and we must allow it to take us there.

Neurofeedback Training - How it Works

The brain has 55 cortical areas that fulfil different functions, individually and in networks. 

[e.g. verbal, social complexity, mood regulation, focus/concentration,sense of self DMN]

When any of these areas becomes dysregulated, it can give rise to various pathologies. 

[anxiety, depression, focus issues,  developmental, autism/Scz]

[This can happen as a result of natural/genetic propensities, trauma (emotional and physical), infection and neurodegeneration (age and disease)]

By training the dysrhythmic brain areas, we can help the brain restore balance and functionality. 

Neurofeedback training works on the basis of showing the brain a reflection of its own behaviour and rewarding more efficient patterns.  

We attach sensors to the dysrhythmic brain area to read EEG data.  This gets interpreted and analysed real-time.  Meanwhile, the person is watching a movie, engaging their conscious mind.  When the particular brain area we are training is not producing an efficient wave pattern, we give the brain feedback:  the volume drops, slightly, or the picture changes size.  

That brain area then responds by changing its behaviour to restore the volume and picture size.  This change in behaviour happens preconsciously – i.e. without our conscious effort – we are watching the movie. 

Note that the only feedback we are giving the brain about its behaviour is via the volume or picture size change.  There is NO stimulus through the sensors – they only read and pick up the EEG signal. 

With repetition, the trained brain area learns a more efficient way of behaving.  It becomes equipped with a better way to process sensory stimuli and interact with other brain areas. 

Neurofeedback training has been shown to improve functional connectivity between brain areas, as well as successfully treating various mental health issues.  

[physical evidence – Ghaziri; functional connectivity – brain maps, evidence quotes] 

The Process: 

– qEEG brain map

– neurofeedback training

Neurofeedback is a form of complementary therapy and should not be seen as a replacement for conventional medicine.  qEEG brain map-based neurofeedback training takes a more holistic approach to brain functioning, rather than just focusing on medical symptoms.  It is not intended as a form of diagnosis nor medical intervention nor medical advice per the disclaimer.

Neurofeedback London-Brighton-Manchester uses the most sophisticated methods of neurofeedback training. Daniel Webster studied each method under direct supervision of its founders: 

 – the Othmer Method / ILF (Infra-Low Training):  aimed at calming the reticular activating system

 – qEEG brain map based Personalised Brain Training by Dr. David Kaiser to restore functional connectivity.

Neurofeedback: Further Training for Clinicians

Neurofeedback training is a fast-growing complementary therapy approach.  Daniel Webster of Neurofeedback London-Brighton provides consultations to clinicians looking to enter the field and those seeking further insights into the most advanced neurofeedback technologies.  

One-on-one or group sessions can be tailored to proficiency and interest specificity, including the following topics: 

 – The Human Brain:  Overview of cortical functions by Brodmann Area and how we can train these

 – Neurofeedback Training Overview – Applications, Process and Case Studies

 – Specific Neurofeedback Training Modalities – 

  + ILF / The Othmer Method

  + qEEG-brain Map based Default  Network Training 

Daniel Webster has trained extensively with Sue and Siegfried Othmer in Los Angeles, and David Kaiser.  He practices neurofeedback training with both ILF and Default Network Training modalities, specialising in menopause, autism and schizophrenia, as well as their comorbidities.

Consultations can be scheduled with Daniel – phone +44 (0)7966699430 or email daniel@neurofeedback.io

Introduction to Neurofeedback, ILF / Othmer Method and Brain Maps

Online Course

Brain Waves Tell us Brain Maturation

Brain maturation sequence as defined by brainwaves during neurofeedback (delta, theta, alpha)

As our brain matures from infancy through adulthood, the dominant brain rhythm changes.  Ultimately, we are looking for a strong dominance of so-called alpha waves in our cortex.

Our sensory sampling rate starts low, in the delta realm, as an infant.  Theta brainwaves represent our reptilian self and become dominant through early childhood. 

As our cortex matures, it learns to convert the theta waves generated by sub-cortical structures into alpha.  This process is equivalent to taking our primal urges and turning them into group-minded, civilisation-building exercises. 

Alpha is the natural resting rate of our cortex, and it is roughly the same for everyone – the basis for synchronisation. 

With neurofeedback training, we can improve the alpha rhythm during developmental delays. 

 

Thalamus for instinct, cortex for reason

Reptilian brains are limited to the thalamus (and an early version of the hippocampus).  Humans have a cortex built around this reptilian core. 

The cortex takes the reptilian impulses and converts instinct into reason.  It is the basis for our ability to collaborate with others. 

Theta rhythm is generated mainly by the thalamus and other sub-cortical structures. 

Alpha is the resting rhythm of the cortex. 

We want alpha to be dominant when we measure brain activity in the cortex via qEEG brain maps. 

With a brain map, we can see which brain areas are lacking cortical maturity.

Personalised Brain Training enables us to promote optimal cortical functioning.

How sensory sampling rate influences perception

Our alpha rhythm is the rate at which we sample our environment through our senses, eyes closed. 

If we think about alpha as our ‘frame rate’, then sharing the same rhythm helps us share a reality. 

The picture shows how sampling a scene at different rates or rhythms results in varied perceptions of a scene. 

At c.10Hz, we are sampling the world at the same rate as others and can thus share an experience effectively.

Alpha brainwave development through childhood and adult average

Our peak alpha brainwave rate evolves through childhood.

The average alpha, or cortical resting rate, for adults is 10.25Hz. 

We can track cortical development in children and promote age-relevant alpha rhythm. 

With neurofeedback training, we can improve the alpha rhythm during developmental delays.

Brain Maps and Personalised Brain Training

Neurofeedback for menopause

Brain Maps show Character Traits

With a Kaiser Neuromap, we can identify character traits, vulnerabilities and strengths. 

This particular type of brain map shows us relevant information about functional connectivity between brain areas that govern our behaviour patterns.

For the purpose of Personalised Brain Training, we are interested in more persistent attributes than simply states.  Kaiser Neuromaps make these uniquely identifiable and meaningful.

Many Kaiser Neuromap EEG brain maps for neurofeedback

Every Brain is Individual.

A brain map is a way to break down the sources of behaviour patterns in a highly granular form and represents these visually. 

Kaiser Neuromaps reveal the maturity of over 50 Brodmann areas – each with specific functions and contributions to our preconscious interpretation of our surroundings and how we interact with them. 

Instead of categorisation, we get a unique and individual representations of a person’s needs and strengths, and can apply a personalised holistic training approach.

Personalised Brain Training is a neurofeedback training method devised by founders of the field, Barry Sterman and David Kaiser.  

Neurofeedback process illustrated by electrode measurement analysed and transformed into feedback via a movie in visual and auditory form for the preconscious mind to process and adapt its behaviour to in a learning process.

Personalised Brain Training with Neurofeedback

Neurofeedback training is a process where we give the brain feedback about its own activity at a particular cortical site in real time, via visual, auditory or tactile means. 

 There is no direct stimulus to the brain and the sensors attached are for measurement of cortical EEG, or tiny electrical currents detectable on the surface of our head.  

This signal is then amplified and analysed by software in real-time, and this information is used to provide auditory feedback to our brain via small changes in volume.  

Our pre-conscious mind responds to the feedback and corrects its behaviour while our conscious attention is focused on the reward – watching the movie at full volume

A learning curve is observable as the brain adopts new behaviour patterns.

 

Neurofeedback Training calms the mind and restores functionality

With neurofeedback training, we can restore functional connectivity and thus calm the mind.  

The ability to balance instinct with reason enables us to share realities when needed and thus perform better in groups while preserving our individuality.

We take a holistic approach to healthy brain self-regulation, rather than categorisation or diagnosis.  

Neurofeedback is evidence based therapy with a wealth of over 2,000 peer-reviewed research reports per PubMed neurofeedback

Neurofeedback is evidence-based.  It’s first application was discovered in 1971 when it was used to resolve intractable epilepsy. 

There are over 2,000 peer-reviewed research reports on PubMed demonstrating efficacy across a number of pathologies. 

In the US, it is an accepted complementary treatment for many issues. 

Sue Othmer, Siegfried Othmer from EEGInfo and Daniel Webster for ILF / Othmer Method neurofeedback training

The Othmer Method - Neurofeedback Training

In search of treatment for their epileptic son, the Othmer s had exhausted every avenue until they discovered neurofeedback – a method that finally worked.  

Sue and Siegfried Othmer developed the Infra-Low Frequency (ILF) training method, also named Othmer Method of Neurofeedback.  

The Othmer Method of neurofeedback uniquely isolates extremely low organisational frequencies in the brain from an EEG recording and enables us to train these.  

It is thought that these infra-low frequencies pertain to rhythms exhibited by interstitial glial cells that regulate many aspects of neuronal activity.  

Daniel Webster trained personally with Sue and Siegfried Othmer with whom he continues to work on developing new and improved neurofeedback protocols.

Astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and other glial cells are trained by Infra Low Frequency (ILF / Othmer Method) neurofeedback and the BeeMedic NeuroAmp ii

Training Neuronal Function

The Othmer s pioneered the quest for training ever lower organisational frequencies.

These training frequencies in the milli (one-thousandth) Hertz realm are aimed at the cells regulating our neuronal infrastructure. 

They are important for optimal brain growth, function and self-regulation. 

Impairments of glial function have been linked to neuropathologies.

 

 

Physiological Arousal Curve trained with Othmer Method neurofeedback

Improved Self-Regulation

Using the feedback of brainwaves emanating from structures within our reticular activating system, the Othmer Method allows us to train the brain to self-regulate better.  

The goal of this approach is to allow the nervous system to calm down and reset itself onto a better path.  

Realising that our nervous systems, which strive to keep us alive and functioning optimally, can get stuck in dysfunctional modes of behaviour, the Othmer approach to neurofeedback centres on training the brain to self-regulate itself optimally, thus promoting healthy functioning.

Neurofeedback training for better emotional self-regulation

Good Brain Self-Regulation is the Ability to shift Arousal State to the Right Level for the Situation - Neurofeedback Trains this Ability

Another approach to understanding self-regulation of the brain is by taking a look at how the brain performs during different levels of arousal.  Each person has their individual arousal and performance curve.  

We move up and down this curve over the course of the day as we are confronted with situations.

At the high end, extreme arousal constitutes a hyper-vigilant state mentally, and the physical symptoms to match, e.g. higher heart rate, blood pressure, sensory alertness and readiness to respond.  

This is useful in emergencies -“fight or flight” – but ignores necessary rest and recuperation, as well as an awareness of the future and resultant needs for foresight and preparation; it also places unsustainable stress on the body and consequently is not a state that should one should be in continuously.  

At the other extreme, a low arousal state is essential for good rest and sleep, but is not suited to the range of demands in our daily routine, which can include times of high levels of alertness, varying degrees of physical preparedness,  repetitive tasks with different concentration requirements, and all kinds of emotional states paired with their concomitant physiology.

The Othmer Method - Core Protocols:  ILF, Alpha-Theta, Synchrony

There are three core neurofeedback training protocols that form the Othmer Method:

  • ILF – Infra-Low Frequency training
    • the basic modality with which most issues can be addressed. 
    • Key to resolving physiological arousal issues, instabilities, disinhibitions, and localised issues
    • prepares the brain for alpha-theta and synchrony protocols through physical and emotional calming
  • Alpha Theta training –
    • Trauma resolution, ‘unlearning’ fears and habits, boost creativity and insight. 
    • This involves relaxing conscious control and allowing processing of subconscious memories. 
    • Effective in eliminating triggers from developmental or later traumatic experiences that result in depression, anxiety, PTSD, addictions, etc. 
    • Also shown to improve musical creativity, insight and skill in a study by Imperial College, London, and the Royal College of Music
  • Synchrony – raising gamma

The Othmer Method - Training Modalities

The core training protocol in the Othmer Method is Infra-Low Frequency, or ILF training.  Here, four electrodes (sensors) are attached with an easily, washable paste to the head and these merely read, or listen to, brainwaves.  It is basically just an EEG reading (no electric current goes to the head), amplified by a device, the NeuroAmp, and fed into a PC with high processing power in order to decypher the signal and allow us to tune into a frequency of choice and reflect the activity there back to the brain in real-time.  

The feedback occurs solely through the video output including audio, and through a teddy bear that vibrates with different strength proportional to the signal.  The conscious mind’s attention is captured by the video we are watching, anything from youtube to Netflix, while the image is subtly resized in a way that reflects brain activity at the frequency we’ve dialed in.  

The subconscious mind understands the image resizing, and that this is a reflection of itself – at that infra-low frequency – which it can influence.  Once we have found the optimal training frequency, the mind calms.  This was discovered through extensive clinical experimentation over the last thirty years.

Aside from finding the optimal training frequency, a process that normally takes up the first few sessions, the other variable we control in the Othmer Method is the placement of the sensors.  

The core training sites address physiological and emotional regulation; body and emotional relaxation and spatial awareness; and conscious issues such as disinhibition, fears and attachments, and impulse control.  

The right brain hemisphere is broadly tasked with regulating core emotions and physical needs, while the left regulates conscious planning and the execution thereof.  We look at the symptom profiles as a whole rather than focusing on diagnosis, and assess which parts of the brain we need to address with training in order to target issues with brain self-regulation. 

The technical capabilities of the NeuroAmp device were derived from BeeMedic‘s chief engineer, Bernard Wandernoth’s background as a NASA physicist specialising in amplifying minute signals emanating from distant corners of the galaxy.  This same technology enables us now to measure extremely slow oscillations in the micro-Hertz realm, real-time, and show their activity back to our brain. 

 

Neurofeedback for Menopause

Symptoms experienced during menopause include the following, and neurofeedback training has been shown to be effective for many of these: 

 – sleep disturbance 

 – brain fog: attention and working memory issues

 – weight gain and body awareness issues

 – headaches / migraines

 – anxiety 

 – depression 

 – sexual dysfunction and impaired sense of self

 – vasomotor irregularities: hot flashes, night sweats

Neurofeedback for menopause
Now OPEN in Manchester and Liverpool. +44 (0)79666 99430
This is default text for notification bar