Below you’ll find a list of the questions we’re commonly asked:
What is Neurofeedback Training?
Neurofeedback Training (NFT) is a scientifically validated method of ‘brain training’ that helps your brain to learn how to work in a more efficient way. It is based on a very well-studied way of learning called operant conditioning. Please see our section about NFT here.
How does it work?
NFT is a work out for your brain. In the same way you would train a specific muscle group in the gym to achieve a physical goal, NFT helps you to train parts of your brain to also reach personal goals. NFT uses instruments to measure what your brain is doing and ‘feeds’ this back to you on a computer screen, in a way that’s easy to understand. This gives you an opportunity to learn from the feedback to gain more control over your brain function and make your brain more efficient. If your brain works better, you work better! Learn more about Neurofeedback Training and how it works here.
Is Neurofeedback Training safe?
Yes. In 60 years of research and practice, nobody has even been harmed from NFT. There may be some reported side effects, which are transient and will pass. Read more about them here.
Will it hurt or will I feel anything?
Not at all. When you do NFT we monitor and record what your brain is doing using passive sensors (like recording your pulse or your heart rate) and nothing is ever sent to your body via these sensors. These sensors are called electrodes and are part of our EEG cap. To help these sensors get a good signal, we use a little conducting gel, and that might be a bit cold, but that is the only thing you’ll feel!
What can Neurofeedback Training be used for?
The two major branches of application for NFT are clinical (e.g. ADHD, depression) and performance improvement (e.g. sports, music). You can read more about researched applications of NFT here.
How effective is NFT?
There are two major parts which influence the effectiveness of NFT; Neurological Factors and Personal Factors. You can read more about the scientific basis and neurological factors where we discuss what NFT is used for and where the scientific evidence is strongest. We generally have very favourable results with the vast majority of our clients in reducing symptoms and moving towards goals. Most brains respond to training, and most people will feel results which are measureable and lasting.
Whatever your goals are, you can be assured that the staff here at Actualise will be dedicated to developing a detailed and personalised protocol for you. The next piece of the puzzle for achieving results is your input which you can read about in our ‘What we expect from you’ section.
How does the whole process begin?
Everyone begins with an Initial Assessment which you can learn about here.
How many sessions do I need?
This differs from person to person, and particularly from children to adults. Traditionally, the ‘industry standard’ for traditional NFT was roughly 60/80 sessions, but with our more advanced technology and improved protocols, our clients generally require much fewer. In general, our clients require around 20 one-hour sessions. You can read more about the number of session needed in our Training Schedule section.
How often can I do the sessions?
Again this can vary with your personal circumstances. We often recommend two sessions per week initially for optimum learning, with a review thereafter, but this is variable. A minimum of at least one session per week is needed in order to satisfy the requirements for efficient learning. We always start with an initial consultation and assessment, and we can work our schedule there together.
What will happen at the NFT sessions?
During each Neurofeedback Training session, you will wear the EEG cap and we will monitor your brain activity. You will be asked to watch the screen and get a movie to play or get a video game to work. The video/game will play based on your brain activity and as your brain activity being fed back to you, you can begin to gain some control over it as we move through sessions. All in all, sessions are generally comfortable, if a little tiring. Here’s a short video giving you an idea of what happens.
When will I see the benefits?
Some people report feeling some positive effects as early as 3 or 4 sessions in, but for most people it tends to take longer (again it varies based on goals, your own input, age etc.) The early positive effects tend to be subtle and short-lived, and it is with continued reinforcement and training that these benefits become more noticeable and stable.
NFT is strengthening new and more efficient neural pathways and patterns, which is much like exercising a muscle in the body. As with physical training, people see benefits at different rates and other factors apart from the training itself will have an influence. As a result, it can take varying amounts of time to see changes. You can read more in our ‘Progress and Results’ section.
Will the effects last?
Results gained with NFT are generally well maintained; especially once you maintain the behavioural changes that go along with them. As NFT trains towards greater efficiency, it is easier for your brain to maintain this new way of working. With this in mind, it is important to try not to let yourself fall back into old habits which would support old brain patterns. Continuing to break old habits is continuing to practise using your improved brain patterns and new neural pathways. Practise will make them more dominant over old ones, and thus maintaining effects.
As we change and develop, especially when we are young, our brains may go back to the ‘old way’ of working. This may just occur as we change, as old habits begin again, or it may be triggered by particular events. If this happens, our brains can ‘relearn’ what it learned before with a small number of sessions.
Will my health insurance cover the costs/can I get tax relief?
Following on from Dr. Keane’s presentation to Dáil Éireann, the then Minister for Health agreed that NFT should be a tax-deductible medical expense. Thus, you can claim this through your Med-2 form. Some health insurance plans will cover some of the services we offer. This will depend on your plan, and we can give you some advice about this. Feel free to contact us with any queries.
Do you have a cancellation policy?
When you book a consultation, we take a €50 non-refundable deposit. This is then deducted from your consultation fee. For NFT sessions, you are required to give at least 24 hours’ notice. Otherwise, a €40 cancellation fee will apply. We appreciate you adhering to our policy. Our other policies can be read here.
Do you have a waiting list?
Generally, yes. Due to the increasing demand for our services, as well as the positive outcomes, demand for our services is high. We try to keep waiting times down, but you may experience a wait before your consultation. We can give you an estimate of waiting time once you make contact with us.
Can I skip to the top of the waiting list?