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Overview

Brain scans of people with OCD has shown that there is abnormal activity in the brain regions associated with strong emotions and reactions to them as well as an imbalance of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Neurofeedback training helps train the brain regions associated with emotional reactivity and control. Neurofeedback helps by giving feedback to the brain about how well it is working so that the brain learns to self-regulate, which thereby reduces the symptoms of brain deregulation found in OCD brains. Through multiple sessions, the brain trains itself to self-regulate without needing the feedback, which leads to permanent changes, and thus benefits.
Thus, neurofeedback helps ease obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours in OCD by teaching the brain how to calm down when triggered by these impulses. In addition, neurofeedback also leads to improvement in performance which becomes evident in school, work, or sports. The better the person’s brain functions, the better the person functions in their daily life.
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OCD Psychiatry: What is it and how can it help you?

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Living with OCD and Overcoming Them: Survivor Stories

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How effective is Neurofeedback for OCD?

Neurofeedback is very effective in calming the OCD brain and reducing the symptoms of obsessive thoughts, fears, anxiety, and compulsive behaviours, and these brain changes are permanent.

How many numbers of sessions are required?

The number of neurofeedback sessions required depends on the severity of the person’s OCD symptoms and how responsive they are to sessions.

Is Neurofeedback safe for OCD?

Neurofeedback is a non-invasive treatment, much like a form of exercise for the brain and is generally considered safe. There are no significant side effects, which when do occur, are mild and short-lived. Common side effects include mild headaches, anxiety, lack of focus, and sleepiness. These side effects can be reported to the neurofeedback specialist who can accordingly modify the treatment.