Published on 27 September 2021

Biofeedback: Types, Advantages: Understand In Detail

General Psychology Bio-Feedback
Table of Contents

The term Biofeedback was coined by U.S. psychologist and parapsychologist Gardner Murphy in the year 1969. It refers to the process in which the automatic movements of various body parts (Bio) of a patient are taken, and (feedback) is given to the patient.

We have two forms of body movements. One is controlled, and the other is uncontrolled. For example, if a person is hungry, he opens a box of sweets and eats. Here, in this case, hunger is uncontrolled; however, the action of opening a box of sweets and eating is controlled.

Let's say someone calls out your name. You would respond with a yes. You hear the greeting. This is, again unconscious action of the ears. To hear. Your brain then signals you to respond in the affirmative. This is your conscious action. Biofeedback is the process of becoming aware of your automatic actions.

Biofeedback is a mind-body therapy that can improve mental and physical health.
The therapist will use monitor equipment during the therapy session to measure your body activity. You will see the result on the screen and then test the ways to change the result. According to that therapist, adjust your session for better output.

What Is Biofeedback?

Biofeedback is a therapy that helps you learn more about your body's work. Biofeedback uses some sensors attached to your body to measure how your body function. All this information helps you to develop more control over a particular body part and gain more self-control.

Physical therapists use Biofeedback to help people to improve their body movement patterns. This technique involves using auditory, visual, and material to guide the patient to give their maximum result.

Frequently asked questions

Biofeedback is an alternative option of medicine to tackle various diseases. This therapy teaches people to change the way their body functions and improve mental as always physical health.
Biofeedback therapy requires a wide range of different equipment as per their need for monitoring the patient. Biofeedback sensors.1) Electromyographs (EMG) provide data on muscle tension. 2)Feedback thermometer to check body temperature.3) Electrocardiograms (ECG) to check the heart rate.4) Electroencephalography (EEG) for measuring the brain's electrical activity is commonly used in neurofeedback.
Biofeedback seems very helpful in reducing stress, depression, Anxiety, and craving for drugs/alcohol. Improve sleep quality and reduce insomnia problems. It helps to increase the ability to focus in people with ADHD condition. Increase Self-Empowerment and autonomy.

What Is Biofeedback Therapy?

Biofeedback Therapy is a form of training for the body movements that take place unconsciously. To elaborate further, actions like sweating, pressure, etc., which you cannot consciously control, are the focus of Biofeedback.

It involves regulating the unconscious body movements if they are not within the parameters which they are required to be. Like, if a person is suffering from high blood pressure, then this therapy can work. But try these before going for Anxiety medications.

Understand how this therapy is done. The main purpose of biofeedback therapy is that the patient learns more about their own body signs and consciously control them. Biofeedback involves measuring the patient's body and collecting information using two strategies.

  • Direct feedback: Regarding measuring the variable, in the case of heart rate, the numerical value is displayed on a wearable device, e.g., a smartwatch.,
  • Transformed feedback: for measuring the variables, where the measurement is used for the further session to control flexible auditory signals, visually displayed, and other methods.

What Can Be Treated By Using Biofeedback Therapy?

The following diseases can be addressed using Biofeedback Therapy:

  • Blood Pressure
  • Anxiety/ stress
  • ADHD( Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder),
  • Diabetes.
  • PTSD( Post-traumatic stress disorder)
  • Migraine
  • Urinary Tract Incontinence.
  • Body Pain.
  • Psychological Issues.
  • Asthma.
  • Chemotherapy side effects
  • Constipation
  • Chronic pain
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Temporomandibular joint disorder

How Does Biofeedback Therapy Work?

A professional Biofeedback Therapist will attach certain sensors to the patient's body and will then guide the patient on involuntary body movements Biofeedback promotes relaxation in your body, which can help reduce symptoms of various conditions caused by stress.

When you are under stress, your heartbeat rises, your blood pressure increases, your muscle tightens, and you start sweating and breathing fastly. You can see the stress response in the therapists monitor and take immediate feedback to stop it.

Types Of Body Monitors Used For Biofeedback Therapy

  • Muscle Stress Measure: This is used to measure the movements of muscles. Also, to find out if there is tension in the muscles. This device can tackle all the issues related to stress in muscles, such as body pain, UTI, and even anxiety.
  • Thermal Measure: This measures body temperature and regulates it. This is especially very useful in gaining relief from migraines.
  • Brainwaves Measure: Our brain is made of waves like Alpha, Beta, Gama, and Lucid. This monitor will measure your brain waves. Measuring brainwaves and altering their frequency can help the patient focus more or relax more, as the requirement may be.
  • Sweat Rate Measure: As stated, Sweat Rate helps in monitoring sweat. This can help a person with controlling anxiety and chronic pain.
  • Heart Rate Measure: This is very self-explanatory. It can help in controlling blood pressure mainly. All heart-related ailments can be tackled.

What Happens During Biofeedback Therapy?

The nearby monitor shows every result; your therapist will explain it to you and suggest which strategies to use to change the body's function. The therapist may ask you to

  • Change your sitting or sleeping position: changing your body position differently will reduce muscle tension.
  • Change your breathing: changing the breathing pattern can reduce anxiety.
  • Relaxing the muscle: if you focus on relaxing the muscles, then it might relieve the pain.
  • Meditation and focus: thinking about a different thing can help you to control your breath and slow down your heart rate.

Relaxation Techniques

Eventually, you will begin to gain control over your body movements. The biofeedback therapist also helps you practice some relaxation techniques to get better control over the body. Some of the relaxation techniques are

  • Deep breathing: (taking a deep breath as much as possible and breathing out slowly)
  • Meditation: Sitting relaxingly, focusing on the thoughts, and letting go of all negative energy from the body.
  • Muscle relaxing technique: tightening and then relaxing the different muscle groups.
  • Guided imagery: concentrating on a particular image or object to focus on your mind and make you feel relaxed.

Effectiveness Of Biofeedback

Even the researcher is not sure how and why Biofeedback therapy works well. But they know it has fabulous results for treating various conditions such as Anxiety and depression.

  • One research shows that Biofeedback has excellent potential for treating mood & Anxiety disorders, including Post-traumatic stress disorder, Anxiety disorder, and depression in adults.
  • Biofeedback is shown to improve concentration and reduce hyperactivity in persons with ADHD problems.
  • Multiple Analysis studies show that biofeedback reduces depression & muscle tension and enhances cognitive coping in a patient with chronic pain.
  • Biofeedback therapy also helps improve the cognitive process in treating various Anxiety disorders. Such as ADHD (attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder), and PTSD(post-traumatic stress disorder), substance Abuse disorder, Alzheimer, schizophrenia.

How Long Does A Typical Biofeedback Therapy Last?

As Biofeedback Therapy is actually a form of coaching, it is not a therapy that is required forever. Once the patient learns how to develop control over automatic body functions, then the therapy is no longer needed.

Generally, this therapy should take at most 12 therapy sessions. Biofeedback is considered more like training rather than treatment. With training and practice, biofeedback can help people to learn new skills and also help them to cope with different conditions.

Duration of Biofeedback last between 30 to 60 minutes. The usual course of treatment generally takes 4 to 6 sessions. Even though 8 to 12 sessions are common. The duration of treatment depends from person to person. Some more factors include

  • How fast and well your brain responds to the training.
  • Persons goal for treatment
  • Condition you are focusing on.

Advantages Of Biofeedback Therapy

  • This is a completely non-invasive procedure.
  • It acts as a good complement to other medical treatments.
  • It gives a sense of control to the patients over their automatic movements.
  • It is particularly useful to those who cannot take medicines, like pregnant women.
  • Biofeedback Therapies are easy to perform.
  • Most Biofeedback Therapy equipment is portable, so therapy can be performed anywhere.
  • This is a one-time investment with results that last forever.

Can Biofeedback Therapy Be Done Online?

Nowadays, the question of whether something can be done online becomes very important. Biofeedback requires a certain set of instruments to carry out the therapy. This makes therapy challenging if taken online, yes, but not impossible.

This is possible through Biofeedback Computer Programs. These programs help by connecting a sensor to the patient's computer. The therapist can then guide the patient online.

What Is The Cost Of Biofeedback Therapy?

The cost of Biofeedback Therapy varies from therapist to therapist. Skill, experience, qualification, etc., all play a very important role in determining the fees of the therapy. On average, this therapy costs you around $50 per session.

Also, read

Bottom Line From Practical Anxiety Solution

Overall, the benefits of Biofeedback Therapy outrun the negatives. In fact, there are hardly any negatives that can lead to any damage. Biofeedback Therapy is something you should give a go.

Suppose a Biofeedback session is successful for you. Then it might control the symptoms of your condition. You can also practice the biofeedback technique on your own. However, consult your doctor before stopping the medical treatment of your disease.