Neurofeedback Therapy Week Two: Second Week of therapy…..first week of school (glup).

September 3, 2013

“”If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” – Woody Allen

“If you want God to REALLY laugh, change your plans again, watch them crumble, and repeat the process.”- Me

 

Even since I was a child, I have always dreamed of becoming a teacher.  I loved working with children and it was a perfect job for someone who hoped to have a family or her own.  As I stood proudly on the stage at my college graduation, I was positive that I would soon start my long, wonderful career as a teacher.  I had always been taught that if you work hard for something, it would happen to you.  So God Damn it, I was going to become a teacher.

                                                                                Yeah right!

Four child-related jobs later, I decided that maybe I should change careers.   So,  I became an activities director.  I loved it and I was good at it.  I thought  “Hey, maybe I could this as a career .”

Fat chance.

                Yet after four jobs, three years, a move to the south, a move back from the south and an empty  savings account, I realized being an activities director wasn’t going to work either.  So where did this leave me? Broke, and unemployed.  Yes, at age thirty I was living home with the parents.  Ah, the American Dream (sob).  It seemed that the only logical thing to was to go back to teaching.

  Despite the horrible experiences I had teaching, I knew it was the best chance I had to get a decant job was in the educational field.  I had the experience and a degree with elementary/special education.  So, after I was offered a teacher assistant job I immediately accepted.  What choice did I have….right?

                                                                                               

Here I was, inside the elementary school with my new collegues listening to the principal drone on about the brand new year.  My face smiled so hard, it hurt.  Inside though I was thinking “Oh My God, I’m going to fail…..“Oh My God, I’m going to fail…..“Oh My God, I’m going to fail…..”

                Yet I survived the day!  Hooray!! One down, and only 179 more to go!

 

                Now, back to the real topic of my blog: my Neurofeedback Therapy.

Traffic to the Neurofeedback center was stop and go.  I did rather decent with the rewards.  This time it was 3 minutes on, and 30 seconds off.   No real side effects today.  Yeah!!! 

                Poor Tech One kept apologizing for hurting me.  However, I am very sensitive to touch.  That is because part of my left brain is overactive. 

                Here is the score from today’s sessions.  I wish I could put it in a chart form…but I don’t know how. 

63, 57, 61, 63, 58, 61, 62, 63

               

 

 

September 6, 2013

                Ouch!  That is how my head feels.  What a headache!    I haven’t had one of those in a while.  My score for the sessions was as follows:

60,64,63,62,60,62,64,61,59,63.  I felt extremely tired when I went home.  In fact, I had no desire to even do anything.   I’m sure part of the reason I am so tired is because the stress I felt at work.

  Work actually is going well…which is part of why I am freaking out.  Let me explain.  In my past jobs (and two careers) I have always asked my employers had well I was doing.  They would always insist that I was doing fine.  My co-workers would always praise me.  So you could imagine my surprise when I my employer would call me in to say the following three words: You are fired. 

Okay…it was not normally in those words but it certainly sounded the same!   

Although it is only nine, I’m off to bed.  I am way to tired to do anything else.  Night!

 

September 7, 2013

                Noting like spending my Saturday morning  getting glue stuck to my head and staring at a computer screen.  The session was (again) followed by a massage headache.  Doc said that is normal, especially since my brain was so sluggish.  He offered to lower the interval times, but I refused.  There was no way in hell that I was going to slow the process anymore!

                On the plus side, Doc gave me some more insight about my brain.  The reason I am so sensitive to touch and why I aced the critical reasoning part of the test is because my left brain is over active.  The right side, which helps the mind solve problems and helps one learn visually and auditory.   Both the problems on the left and the right side of the brain is causing a traffic jam, which is another reason why I am so slow!  Today, it felt like electricity was moving in my brain.

                Doc also recommended I try Guaram, which would help me stay awake and help with the cognitive process of my brain.  Interesting.

59, 55, 56, 51, 58, 55, 51, 61, 51, 65

Neurofeed Back Therapy Diary: Week One, Let the ‘Fixing’ Began!

I feel the best way for others to benefit from my experience is if I start blogging about my Neurofeedback sessions each week.   I will also record what changes (if any) I have noticed.  The purpose of my blog is for others with learning disabilities learn about Neurofeedback Therapy.  If it helps me, perhaps it will help others as well.

The cortex (the outside covering of the brain) is sluggish.   This indicates that I have the subtype of A.D.D. which is called Sluggish Cognitive Temperament.  Basically, my brain processes things much slower.  Hence, it takes me a while to finish certain tasks.

I hope to feature a page, displaying my brain mapping in more detail at a later date.   Enjoy the diary!

 

 

Monday, August 26th

Eight days until my job starts….

Oh boy……

My first neurofeedback session was today!  I’m a bit flustered that I am just starting the treatment a week before my new job starts!  I started meeting with Doc in April in hopes of  finishing the treatment before my job started.   Yet between waiting for  approval from my insurance company and Doc’s schedule…it wasn’t meant to be.

Doc’s goal is to make my brain process things faster so I can work faster.  Therefore, the first step is to work on the cortex, the outside layer of the brain.  We want to make the brain from “sluggish” to “tightness”.  This will take about twenty sessions.   After that, Doc might work with me to re-map my brain to see how the rest of the brain is functioning.   This whole process is going to take longer than I expected!   There goes my afternoons baby-sitting.  Instead I will be driving forty-minutes to get my brain fixed.  Groan…………….

Tech One (whom I met from the initial brain mapping process) once again put the sticky paste on my scape.  Then she put twenty four  white circular wires (which I learned are sensors) on my head.  As a reminder, the picture below is just an example of what I looked like:

(picture from: http://www.intechopen.com/books/management-of-epilepsy-research-results-and-treatment/dense-array-eeg-epilepsy)

The wires were connected to a computer.  Tech Two told me to just stare at the computer.  A circular picture similar to the one below appeared:

(picture from https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&docid=UEy75kWu6pxFmM&tbnid=6nxiDQVMcdz94M:&ved=0CAUQjRw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.appliedneuroscience.com%2FCollection.htm&ei=M3gsUsPuNMLD4AO3i4GwCw&psig=AFQjCNE3MEZdYdFPumErLzxjR9id6y2GJg&ust=1378732327399249)

Weird picture, isn’t it? The only difference between the picture above and the one I saw on the  computer screen is there was only one green circle in the center instead of four.   I was instructed to stare at the screen and concentrate on the green circle.

“What else should I be doing while I am sitting here?” I asked the second Tech.

“Nothing,” Tech Two replied.  “The brain and the computer are supposed to do the work.  Just sit and concentrate on the green ball on the screen.  When you see the green ball pop up, that means the brain waves are moving the way it is suppose to.”  It amazed me that I wasn’t doing the work; the brain and the computer were completing the task!

I would stare at the computer for two minutes (although it felt like ten)  and then have a ninety second break before the next two minute interval started.  At the end of each interval, the computer would show me the rewards I earned.  Each ‘reward’ represented the half of second my brain listened to the computer.  My reward for the first interval was 160, meaning my brain listened to the computer for 80 seconds during the first interval.

I couldn’t understand why the hell they are called ‘rewards’.   My brain was doing the work.  All I was doing was staring at the screen.  It would be really cool if I did get some reward, like a ten percent discount off my co-pay for my next session.

Tech Two said I would feel some ‘brain fatigue’ after the session.  I didn’t feel tired, but my head did feel weird; almost like it was getting stretched out.   Still, I am excited to see the changes during the next few weeks….if there are going to be changes at all……

 

August 28, 2013

Five days until my job starts….

Starting to feel nervous…….

 

My score is still 160.  YEAH!!!

Despite feeling wide awake this morning, my brain felt very strained and tired after my feedback session today.  Twice, I bumped into the wall on my way out of the room.

“Are you all right?” Tech One asked.

I rubbed my head, extremely embarrassed.  “Uh…I’m good, thanks.”

I sat in the waiting room and tried to read, only to get a headache.  It didn’t help that the other patients saw my clumsy act, which made me feel very self conscious.

So I went to my car and rested my eyes for twenty minutes.  Then I heard a knock on my window.

“Are you okay?”

Tech Two was outside on her break, and saw me sleeping in my car.  It was sweet of the staff to be concern of me.  Yet I felt (unjustly)  annoyed.   Could I get some privacy, please? Sheesh!

I insisted that I was all right, turned the car on, and left.   Even as I type this, I feel drained.  I better asked Doc if this is normal….

 

August 29th, 2013

Five  days until my job starts….

(Gulp)

 

I had scheduled to meet my date, Lance, at a pub around eight.  My session ended at 6:30.  The pub was forty minutes away.  Not a problem, right?  Oh wait,…..I need to clean the glue out of my hair.

                See, the glue stuff makes me look like something between Pipi Lonstocking and Edward Scissor Hand.  Here is what I mean:

Image

(picture from:www.coolest-homemade-costumes.com )

+

Image

      (picture from: http://www.fanpop.com)

=

ME!

(well, not me, but my hair looked similar)

Image

Picture from:

   http://cdn.stylisheve.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Crazy-halloween-hairstyles-for-women_11.jpg

Scary, isn’t?

Then I realized something: My aunt lives twenty  minutes away from the Neurofeedback Center.   I could run to her place, take a shower, and still meet Lance at eight.  So, called her up, and asked if I could use her shower (weird thing to ask, isn’t it?).

Thankfully, I had already informed her previously about getting involved with Neurofeedback so she understood why I had glue in my hair (it would have been an awkward conversation otherwise).  Auntie said yes, I could come and use the shower.  Hooray!!

Anyway, back to my session.  Doc was concerned with how long the intervals were on the EEG today.  Once I told him how tired I was, he told Tech One to lower the intervals to one  minute with a 90 second break instead of two minutes with a 50 second break.  This means my brain should aim for a score of 60 instead of 160.  I’m not happy with Doc’s decision.  In my mind the longer the intervals the faster the brain will fix itself.  Of course, if my brain works too hard it would probably do more harm than good.   I have to admit; I am not as tired today after the session.

 

 

August 31, 2013

Three days until my new job starts…..

I’m going to be okay, I’m going to be okay….I’m..going to throw up…..

 

I’m pretty annoyed today for many reasons.  I didn’t score as high as I did in the past.   Even with the times of the intervals being cut into half, I only scored 49 instead of 60.  I hope it was because I was just tired.  Tech one said she would cut the break in half next week.

The other reason I am so agitated is because my new job starts Tuesday.  I am looking forward to my new job, but I am not expecting it to last long.  Because I can’t finish my work as fast as my peers, my past jobs have only lasted a year.  This is why I want this brain mapping to work.

Needless to say, I haven’t notice any changes and I doubt I will for a few more weeks.

 

Choa, Readers!

 

-Mary Regina Shine

 

Neurofeed Back Therapy Diary: Week One, Let the ‘Fixing’ Began!

[contact-form][contact-field label=’Name’ type=’name’ required=’1’/][contact-field label='Email' type='email' required='1'/][contact-field label='Website' type='url'/][contact-field label='Comment' type='textarea' required='1'/][/contact-form]

I feel the best way for others to benefit from my experience is if I start blogging about my Neurofeedback sessions each week.   I will also record what changes (if any) I have noticed.  The purpose of my blog is for others with learning disabilities learn about Neurofeedback therapy.  If it helps me, perhaps it will help others as well.

The cortex (the outside covering of the brain) is sluggish.   This indicates that I have the subtype of A.D.D. which is called Sluggish Cognitive Temperament.  Basically, my brain processes things much slower.  Hence, it takes me a while to finish certain tasks.

I hope to feature a page, displaying my brain mapping in more detail at a later date.   Enjoy the diary!

Monday, August 26th

Eight days until my job starts….

My first neurofeedback session was today!  I’m a bit flustered that I am just starting the treatment a week before my new job starts!  I started meeting with Doc in April in hopes of  finishing the treatment before my job started.   Yet between waiting for  approval from my insurance company and Doc’s schedule…it wasn’t meant to be.

Doc’s goal is to make my brain process things faster so I can work faster.  Therefore, the first step is to work on the cortex, the outside layer of the brain.  We want to make the brain from “sluggish” to “tightness”.  This will take about twenty sessions.   After that, Doc might work with me to re-map my brain to see how the rest of the brain is functioning.   This whole process is going to take longer than I expected!   There goes my afternoons baby-sitting.  Instead I will be driving forty-minutes to get my brain fixed.  Groan…………….

Tech One (whom I met from the initial brain mapping process) once again put the sticky paste on my scape.  Then she put twenty four  white circular wires (which I learned are sensors) on my head.  As a reminder, the picture below is just an example of what I looked like:

(picture from: http://www.intechopen.com/books/management-of-epilepsy-research-results-and-treatment/dense-array-eeg-epilepsy)

The wires were connected to a computer.  Tech Two told me to just stare at the computer.  A circular picture similar to the one below appeared:

(picture from https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&docid=UEy75kWu6pxFmM&tbnid=6nxiDQVMcdz94M:&ved=0CAUQjRw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.appliedneuroscience.com%2FCollection.htm&ei=M3gsUsPuNMLD4AO3i4GwCw&psig=AFQjCNE3MEZdYdFPumErLzxjR9id6y2GJg&ust=1378732327399249)

Weird picture, isn’t it? The only difference between the picture above and the one I saw on the  computer screen is there was only one green circle in the center instead of four.   I was instructed to stare at the screen and concentrate on the green circle.

“What else should I be doing while I am sitting here?” I asked the second Tech.

“Nothing,” Tech Two replied.  “The brain and the computer are supposed to do the work.  Just sit and concentrate on the green ball on the screen.  When you see the green ball pop up, that means the brain waves are moving the way it is suppose to.”  It amazed me that I wasn’t doing the work; the brain and the computer were completing the task!

I would stare at the computer for two minutes (although it felt like ten)  and then have a ninety second break before the next two minute interval started.  At the end of each interval, the computer would show me the rewards I earned.  Each ‘reward’ represented the half of second my brain listened to the computer.  My reward for the first interval was 160, meaning my brain listened to the computer for 80 seconds during the first interval.

I couldn’t understand why the hell they are called ‘rewards’.   My brain was doing the work.  All I was doing was staring at the screen.  It would be really cool if I did get some reward, like a ten percent discount off my co-pay for my next session.

Tech Two said I would feel some ‘brain fatigue’ after the session.  I didn’t feel tired, but my head did feel weird; almost like it was getting stretched out.   Still, I am excited to see the changes during the next few weeks….if there are going to be changes at all……

August 28, 2013

Five days until my job starts….

Starting to feel nervous…….

My score is still 160.  YEAH!!!

Despite feeling wide awake this morning, my brain felt very strained and tired after my feedback session today.  Twice, I bumped into the wall on my way out of the room.

“Are you all right?” Tech One asked.

I rubbed my head, extremely embarrassed.  “Uh…I’m good, thanks.”  I sat in the waiting room and tried to read, only to get a headache.  It didn’t help that the other patients saw my clumsy act, which made me feel very self conscious.

So I went to my car and rested my eyes for twenty minutes.  Then I heard a knock on my window.

“Are you okay?”

Tech Two was outside on her break, and saw me sleeping in my car.  It was sweet of the staff to be concern of me.  Yet I felt (unjustly)  annoyed.   Could I get some privacy, please? Sheesh!

I insisted that I was all right, turned the car on, and left.   Even as I type this, I feel drained.  I better asked Doc if this is normal….

August 29th, 2013

Five  days until my job starts….

(Gulp)

I had scheduled to meet my date, Lance, at a pub around eight.  My session ended at 6:30.  The pub was forty minutes away.  Not a problem, right?  Oh wait,…..I need to clean the glue out of my hair.

                See, the glue stuff makes me look like something between Pipi Lonstocking and Edward Scissor Hand.  Here is what I mean:

Image

(picture from:www.coolest-homemade-costumes.com )

+

Image

      (picture from: http://www.fanpop.com)

=

ME!

(well, not me, but my hair looked similar)

Image

Picture from:

   http://cdn.stylisheve.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Crazy-halloween-hairstyles-for-women_11.jpg

Scary, isn’t?

Then I realized something: My aunt lives twenty  minutes away from the Neurofeedback Center.   I could run to her place, take a shower, and still meet Lance at eight.  So, called her up, and asked if I could use her shower (weird thing to ask, isn’t it?).

Thankfully, I had already informed her previously about getting involved with Neurofeedback so she understood why I had glue in my hair (it would have been an awkward conversation otherwise). Auntie said yes, I could come and use the shower.  Hooray!!

Anyway, back to my session.  Doc was concerned with how long the intervals were on the EEG today.  Once I told him how tired I was, he told Tech One to lower the intervals to one  minute with a 90 second break instead of two minutes with a 50 second break.  This means my brain should aim for a score of 60 instead of 160.  I’m not happy with Doc’s decision.  In my mind the longer the intervals the faster the brain will fix itself.  Of course, if my brain works too hard it would probably do more harm than good.   I have to admit; I am not as tired today after the session.

August 31, 2013

Three days until my new job starts…..

I’m going to be okay, I’m going to be okay….I’m..going to throw up…..

I’m pretty annoyed today for many reasons.  I didn’t score as high as I did in the past.   Even with the times of the intervals being cut into half, I only scored 49 instead of 60.  I hope it was because I was just tired.  Tech one said she would cut the break in half next week.

The other reason I am so agitated is because my new job starts Tuesday.  I am looking forward to my new job, but I am not expecting it to last long.  Because I can’t finish my work as fast as my peers, my past jobs have only lasted a year.  This is why I want this brain mapping to work.

Needless to say, I haven’t notice any changes and I doubt I will for a few more weeks.