Below are our most frequently asked questions about neurofeedback. Learn all the essential information decide if NeurOptimal® is right for you.
- Cost of Neurofeedback; in-person sessions, home rentals and equipment sales
- Watch our Q&A Webinar on Neurofeedback: Who is it for and how does it work?
- Why NeurOptimal?
- Is Neurofeedback Safe?
- Does NeurOptimal® Have Side Effects?
- Is NeurOptimal® FDA Approved?
- What's The Difference Between Linear And Dynamical® Neurofeedback?
- Do I Need A Brain Map (QEEG Test) To Start?
- How Is NeurOptimal® Different From Other Neurofeedback Systems?
- 3 Top Difference; NeurOptimal® Vs. Other Systems
Why NeurOptimal® Neurofeedback?
With over 20 years in development, it is the latest generation and only Dynamical Neurofeedback™ system on the market. It works by providing precisely timed feedback determined by the 265 data points collected through the EEG sensors every second! The feedback cues the brain at the exact millisecond it needs in order to see and change its maladaptive habits. Being the only fully automated system on the market, trainees don't have to worry about quality of the hook-up or setting protocols.
Watch video: How Does NeurOptimal® Work? (3 min.)
Is Neurofeedback Safe?
Yes, neurofeedback training with the NeurOptimal® system is safe for anyone to use. Why? Because nothing is being added to your brain. The advanced technology works by precisely timed micro-interruptions in music. Why music? Auditory feedback is the brain's most frequently used sense perception to gather information about changes in the environment. NeurOptimal® is designed based on how the brain organically works to process new information.
Watch Related Video:
The Evolution of Neurofeedback (3 min.)
Does NeurOptimal® Have Side Effects?
NeurOptimal® is 100% non-invasive and does not force brainwave or brain state changes. Change comes from the brain being cued to engage its own ability to create adaptive brainwave. It is highly unlikely you will feel any ill effects following a session. Any noticeable shifts in your mood, awareness or energy level after brain training depends on the individual and can vary from session to session. Sometimes people are unsettled by experiences due to the newness and unfamiliarity of the sensations. For example, for someone who is highly anxious to start to feel calm, can at first, feel unsettling because it is unfamiliar.
Reaching New Heights: Luigi's Story - How Neurofeedback Helped His School Performance
is NeurOptimal® FDA Approved?
NeurOptimal® is designated by the FDA as a General Wellness Product based on the safety of the system and its intended uses. This is good news for individuals wanting a brain training program that is safe and non-invasive.
What's the difference between Linear and Dynamical neurofeedback™?
There are two generations of neurofeedback. The first generation created linear or protocol-based neurofeedback where an initial brain map is required to assess brainwave functioning. The map is then used by the expert trainer to set protocols of brainwave changes through entrain and migrate techniques to create state change. The second generation created Dynamical™ NeurOptimal® neurofeedback. Due to the advancements in processing speed, with Dynamical Neurofeedback™ the brain map functioning is integrated fo more precise real-time feedback. The software analyzes the largest range of brainwave frequencies, (past 60 Hz) to capture the most information. The second advancement is that through the precise cues the brain is able to utilize its own capacity for shifting brainwave patterns for optimal performance.
Do I need a brain map (QEEG test) Before I start?
No. A diagnosis or brain map is not needed when using NeurOptimal®. The mapping is integrated into NeurOptimal®'s software. Since NeurOptimal® is Dynamical Neurofeedback™, the brain is cued to optimize its functioning on a global level (not just for specific targeted changes).
How is NeurOptimal® Different from Other Neurofeedback Systems?
NeurOptimal® differs from other neurofeedback systems because it is the latest generation of neurofeedback that integrates changes in computer processing speed and is designed to utilize how the brain is naturally designed to improve its functioning continuously in real-time. NeurOptimal® is designed to work with the brain as an information-detection system, which is why feedback is delivered through precisely timed interruptions in music. By simply giving the brain feedback information about its own activity 256 times per second, NeurOptimal® helps support our intrinsic reorganization abilities to create calm, and the ability to focus again.
NeurOptimal® And Other Neurofeedback Systems:
3 Top Differences
- NeurOptimal® does not tell the brain what or what not to do. It does not push or pull your brain in any particular direction. The system responds to the client's brain wave information and the client responds to the system feedback.
- NeurOptimal® trainers do not diagnose; there are no long questionnaires or clinical discussions. Because trainers do not diagnose, they do not treat specific symptoms, they train the whole brain at once. In the area of brain training, there are inherent and significant differences in the underlying theories between these systems that result in the development of different approaches to software development.
- Protocol or linear neurofeedback systems require licensed clinicians to make or use a diagnosis, often with the help of a quantitative electroencephalogram (QEEG). Due to the design and need for an expert trained in setting and adjusting protocol for state change, protocol systems are not appropriate for home use.
Neurofeedback for Kids: How Young Can you Do Neurofeedback?
With NeurOptimal®, unlike linear systems, training is safe at any age, including young children. Common uses in young children are for re-building health and wellness after concussions, to improve school performance, and emotional regulation. Helping create or re-establish good sleep hygiene is another common reason children train.
Q&A On Renting a Home System
How Much Does Neurofeedback Cost? And How Can I Start?
When renting a home system we provide three home neurofeedback training plans ranging from $650 and up. If training multiple people we offer an Unlimited Session Plan for $950 per month which is the best value for couples and families with children who want to train together. We recommend 2-4 months for best results but the only commitment to start with is one month. Pay as you go; rent for a month and extend for another month or two weeks as needed. If new to neurofeedback, an in-person session (with safe Covid-19 protocols) is also available in NYC, LA (Pasadena), Denver and Boulder. Often people come in for a session to see how it works and then decide to rent, or buy. Price per in-person session range from $130 and up depending on location. If purchasing a new NeurOptimal® system, lowest cost is $7500 and up. We also help health professionals getting started with neurofeedback training at their healthcare clinic or practice.
Top Neurofeedback Options and Cost
- RENT: We provide three different monthly rental plans starting from $650 per month up to $950 per month. Renting is the most cost-effective and convenient option and multiple people can train together. We ship throughout U.S. and Canada at a flat-rate cost of $75-90 (includes return).
- SCHEDULE: Price ranges from $130 and up depending on location. We have offices in NYC, Pasadena, Denver and Boulder. Come in for a neurofeedback session and see if it's for you. A live demonstration on how to operate the system is available upon request. Book a session today.
- BUY: The NeurOptimal® Neurofeedback system we use for in-office sessions and rentals is also for sale, for both home and professional use. Price range from $7,500 and up. The benefits of purchasing are that the price is less for training long term. It is particularly advantageous if you are training multiple family members or if you would like to train for more than a few months. Learn more here.
Does the home neurofeedback device require any training to use?
No special training is needed when training with the NeurOptimal® neurofeedback system as it is a fully automated. No brain mapping, no protocols to set, nor a diagnosis is needed as the expertise is built in - the brain and the software will do all the work! The software's user interface is simple to navigate and one will be able to start a session with a few simple taps. There are a total of five EEG sensors set up that are placed on the ears and scalp. It may be challenging at first, but we provide a step-by-step manual and short how-to videos to make it easier for our renters. The printed manual is exclusive to Neurofeedback Training Co.. You will also be assigned an experienced neurofeedback trainer coach to guide you throughout the rental period.
Can HSA be used to pay for neurofeedback and the equipment rental?
We are not a medical device company. However, many people will use their HSA account if they have a therapist or doctor's letter stating they need neurofeedback.
Do you take Insurance?
No. We don't accept insurance. If your insurance company allows out-of-network expenses we can however provide you with an invoice to submit. Sometimes insurance may also need a recommendation from a Doctor or therapist.
Check with your insurance company to see if it covers neurofeedback. Most insurance considers it “experimental” and don’t cover it. The good news is that an out-of-pocket home rental is roughly the same cost per session as a co-pay.
Is there anything I can do to enhance the training?
The best supports for optimal outcomes are a healthy, whole foods based diet, regular exercise and filling out your self-reporting checklists every 10 sessions. The checklist is an important support for noticing what is improving.
There's no need to be in a 'certain state' before a session, nor is necessary to put your attention on anything in particular while in session. It's OK to read, talk sleep, zone out/day dream, play a game, do homework or meditate. Watch this video to learn what a session looks like. If feeling anxious prior, it may even be helpful to do a session.
Is it beneficial to do a session when I am feeling anxious?
Sometimes people experience a 'spike' in old symptoms, such as feeling worried, around sessions 8-10, when the brain is in the process of reorganization. The old feelings don't last and it's part of how a nonlinear system changes, like a dump of snow in April, we don't assume winter has returned and we won't have spring. This old feeling is not a sign the training is not working.
Is there any way to track progress using the data the system collects during each session? I've been using the checklist and can definitely feel the results but I'd love to see a data visualization of my progress if that's possible.
No, the system was designed to use a self-reporting checklist to track changes. Learn more from this blog article; Is Neurofeedback a Sham? How do I know it is working?
How many sessions do I need?
Brain training promotes managing stressors, negative thoughts and emotional states, and building focus and resiliency. A self-reported scale can build your self-awareness so that you are confident about your brain training results. The recommended amount of neurofeedback sessions depends on goals and time frame. Learn why.
Related:(includes an explanation video): "How Many Neurofeedback Sessions Should I Do?"
Webinar on Neurofeedback
what you need to know
Watch our free 40-minute Zoom Webinar with NeurOptimal® Neurofeedback Trainer and Therapist Natalie Baker. She will answer questions such as:
- How does NeurOptimal® work?
- How is it different?
- What are the benefits?
- How do I know if it's working?
- Is it good for what ails me or my family? ( ADHD or focus/impulsivity, anxiety, depression, chronic illness, stress, sleep issues, addiction or moderation issues)?