In our practice, we treat people with insomnia or other sleep disorders. We begin with a thorough assessment, which would include, of course, a standard case history. We will use computerized-based assessments to get a deeper look into a person’s overall health, including their brain health, which is ultimately what regulates and provides our sleep.
We also will perform what’s called a qEEG brain map. This is a noninvasive electroencephalogram, which has been standard in the neurological health profession for many years. This is a way of observing or looking at dysregulation or dysfunction in the different regions of the brain, in terms of brainwave activity. What we particularly look at, especially with someone that suffers with sleep issues, is delta brainwave state, because delta is most known for providing us a sufficient restful night’s sleep, a time when our body can kick in its restorative properties and allow us to just rest and shut off our mind. Oftentimes, when we do this brain mapping process, we will see a dysregulation with delta brainwave activity.
The top two corresponding therapies are qEEG-based neurofeedback therapy and brainwave entrainment therapy.
QEEG-based neurofeedback therapy is a type of therapy that uses the same EEG technology, but instead of it being used diagnostically, it is used in a treatment sense, to help retrain the brain, particularly delta brainwave states, into normal function.
We also use brainwave entrainment therapy and oftentimes, we will send our patients home to use this prior to sleep. This is using what is called photic, or light, and sound stimulation, pulsed at specific frequencies, to provide a regulation of a dysregulated brainwave state, particularly delta, and that oftentimes can lull people right into a deep sleep.
These are very successful treatments. We have seen people, just in a matter of a few weeks, particularly using the home-based brainwave entrainment therapy, resolve chronic sleep issues, from not being able to fall asleep in a relatively short period of time to the more extreme issues, where they not only can’t fall asleep, but when they finally do sleep, they are constantly waking up through the evening, or tossing and turning.