NeurOptimal® Dynamical Neurofeedback® is an advanced form of brain-training that is safe, time-tested and effective for all ages. It is considered by many to be the most advanced form of neurofeedback today. The system provides information to the brain about what it has just done, enabling the central nervous system to reorganize itself. In essence, it reminds the brain to self-regulate, which improves the flexibility and resilience of the central nervous system. When the brain reorganizes and self-regulates, challenges fall away and changes are lasting.
NeurOptimal® is designated by the FDA as a General Wellness Product. It is the first and only non-linear or Dynamical Neurofeedback® system in the world. Developed by clinical psychologists Dr. Val and Sue Brown through the Zengar Institute, and in operation since 1996, NeurOptimal® has been used for over 20 years and logs over 71,000 sessions per month in 76 different countries.
More than ever before, our brains are asked to process extraordinary amounts of information. As the article Why It's So Hard to Pay Attention explains, "Our world is now awash in an unprecedented volume of data. The trouble is, our brains haven’t evolved to be able to process it all." When faced with this constant overload they aren't always able to respond in the present moment with adaptability and flexibility. Instead, the same sequences and stories often get repeated, creating persistent and consistent patterns in the electrical signals of the brain. For example, we may worry about the same things over and over again; we may miss important details or lose sight of the big picture as we move through life; sleep, moods, relationships, and performance can all be impacted as well.
In order to break up these consistent, persistent patterns, the brain needs its own activity reflected back to itself. Once its patterns are mirrored back, the brain can and does make changes in its electrical activity to improve resilience and adaptability. NeurOptimal® serves as this mirror, reading the brain's electrical activity 256 times/second and reflecting the brain's activity back to itself. It does not put anything "into" the brain, unlike all other forms of neurofeedback. Instead, it allows for self-correction . . . relying on the inherent sophistication and wisdom of the holographic brain to adjust and adapt. Because the brain makes these changes itself, the results are lasting.
In our fast-paced world today, the overloaded central nervous system needs training to adjust. NeurOptimal® is a missing piece that provides effective training to restore resilience and flexibility to the brain.
Because NeurOptimal® restores flexibility and resilience to the central nervous system (CNS), it can help manage a variety of issues or symptoms, and can help improve all types of performance - for anyone of any age and any physical condition.
Clients with SLEEP CONCERNS report that NeurOptimal® :
· Promotes healthy sleep habits
· Helps with sleep management
· Promotes waking refreshed
Clients with FOCUS CONCERNS report that NeurOptimal® :
· Improves concentration, instruction-following, problem solving, multi-tasking, resource
management, logic, pattern-recognition and hand-eye coordination
· Helps improve ‘mental acuity’
· Enhances learning capacity (including reading issues)
· Helps boost self-esteem
Clients with STRESS AND ANXIETY CONCERNS report that NeurOptimal® :
· Helps manage stress better (helps coping with it easier)
· Helps promote relaxation or stress management
· Helps with feeling more calm
Clients with PERFORMANCE CONCERNS report that NeurOptimal® :
· Promotes a feeling of more confidence
· Helps manage performance anxiety (professional, sports, etc.)
Clients with WEIGHT LOSS & HEALTHY LIFESTYLE CONCERNS report that NeurOptimal® :
· Assists with weight loss goals
· Helps promote a healthy lifestyle
· Helps maintain wellness
· Contributes to brain fitness
· Helps experience more good days than bad days
NeurOptimal® is a method of brain training that works through a feedback system. During a training session, you sit in a comfortable chair or lie on a massage table, listen to music and close your eyes or watch a fractal image or a movie. You wear two tiny sensors on your head and ear clips on your ears that read the electrical activity of the brain. These sensors send the information to a computer with a specialized software program.
The software analyzes the incoming information 256 times per second, notices small changes in the electrical signals of the brain, and creates an interruption in the audio stream of the movie or music to make the brain aware of these changes. The interruptions serve as a "mirror", communicating the brain's current response back to itself. The brain perceives these slight interruptions as a notification that something changed, alerting the central nervous system (CNS) to adjust.
NeurOptimal® communicates mathematically in the same way that the central nervous system (CNS) intrinsically talks to the body - through reporting back to itself the changes in the duration, intensity, frequency, and electrical shifts occurring in the brain. This process re-establishes the brain's ability to recognize and break up consistent, persistent patterns, thus restoring flexibility and resilience to the central nervous system.
Nothing is put into the brain (no electricity, no strong frequency or vibration, no light or sound). Instead, NeurOptimal® works with the central nervous system's innate ability to detect and adaptively respond to change. Once trained, the brain retains this ability, so the results of the sessions are lasting.
During a training session, you sit in a comfortable chair or lie on a massage table, listen to music and close your eyes or watch a fractal image or a movie. You wear two tiny sensors on your head and ear clips on your ears that act as stethoscopes, reading the electrical activity of the brain. No signal is introduced to the brain through the sensors. Earbuds are also placed in the ears. (We offer earbuds in our office or you can bring your own earbuds.)
The music or movie begins to play through earbuds or speakers, and all you do is sit back and relax . . . listen to the music, watch the screen (if desired), close your eyes, read, or fall asleep! Throughout the session, there will be slight interruptions in the sound. After 33 minutes, the system will shut itself off, we will disconnect you from the sensors, and you will be ready to leave the office.
The initial intake session lasts 75 minutes and involves a review of your completed paperwork, including discussion about the issues that brought you in. We'll spend 30 minutes discussing your concerns and goals, then transition into running your first session. Future sessions last 45 minutes - just enough time to get the sensors on, run the program, then remove the sensors. Between the 10th-11th sessions, we'll add an additional 20 minutes to your appointment to discuss changes that may be occurring or questions you may have.
For scheduling, please choose from one of the two providers listed below (Boone or North Wilkesboro). The recommended minimum number of sessions for significant and lasting change to occur is 20-40 sessions. We recommend doing a minimum of10 sessions/month for a period of 2 months, then evaluating whether or not it would be helpful to add an additional ten or twenty sessions. Initially, you can: 1) book a free 30 minute consultation with us to learn more, or 2) book an individual intake session to experience the system ($85). After the intake session, you can purchase individual sessions ($50/session) and reassessment sessions ($85) which take place after every 10th session.
Additionally, we rent systems that can be used at home. Cost for a month's rental, unlimited use, is $900. Cost for a weekend rental, unlimited use, is $250.
*SLIDING SCALE: We do offer a sliding scale for individual sessions if needed. Contact us by phone or email to request and discuss options.
To view forms and informational handouts, visit the NeurOptimal® Client Forms page.
NeurOptimal® is a training tool and does not diagnose, treat, mitigate, prevent or cure any disease, disorder or abnormal physical state, nor does it restore, modify or correct the body’s structure or functioning. If you require medical assistance, please seek the advice of your physician.
This is up to the client, depending on how frequently they feel they need it.
The diagnosis doesn't matter, and sessions are always individual to the person. This is a brain training system rather than a therapy treatment so a diagnosis is irrelevant. The system is "diagnostically agnostic."
NeurOptimal does not have a specific time to start or stop. It is always up to the client, with support of the trainer, to be aware of the subtle shifts and determine when it makes sense to be finished.
Feel free to put them back on. The session will continue.
It is a learned process, like learning to ready - so we that cannot be taken away from you once your brain knows it.
Medications may need to be adjusted as your central nervous system learns to function as it used to. Consultation with your prescribing doctor may be important.
Many times if someone has finished a block of sessions, they may feel they want or need to come back for booster sessions in the future. This is common and can usually help someone feel their best in just a few sessions.
Yes - some people experience great benefit from ongoing monthly sessions - like working out at the gym weekly or monthly. We offer monthly packages for those interested in this option.
NeurOptimal® is a dynamical or non-linear form of neurofeedback. All other forms of neurofeedback are linear. NeurOptimal® measures the strength and timing of the brain's electrical signals, whereas linear neurofeedback systems only measure amplitude/strength. More information coming soon.
After working at home with my daughter in virtual school during the covid19 lockdown, I witnessed her struggle with attention/focus issues, motivation to complete homework, & anxiety. We used a variety of tools to help, but didn't experience significant or lasting changes. Fast-forward to our use of NeurOptimal®: After only 8 sessions, she began initiating & completing her homework on her own, following through on other tasks, & reporting less anxiety & more confidence. Additionally, I began to use the system to addess insomnia that I developed during my daughter's infancy. After only a couple of months, my ability to sleep has begun to normalize. I was so convinced of the system's effectiveness that I bought it for family & client use. I hope it helps you as much as it's helped our family. - Kendal McDevitt
We welcome participants who have had Covid-19 and lingering sensations or concerns after being considered negative for the virus. Please click below to access the Participant Intake Questionnaire or to submit a Post-Care Report, and speak with Kendal or Laura about next steps.
Contact us to request a copy of the NeurOptimal® 2014 International Survey of Trainers to learn more about the far-reaching applications of NeurOptimal® Neurofeedback training.