What are Brainwaves?
Brainwaves emanate from the brain in a synchronized rhythmic pattern of electrical activity. They can be measured through the scalp with an electroencephalograph(EEG). They are measured and recorded by the frequency, rhythm or cycles per second and also by the amount of energy or amplitude in microvolts. Researchers have identified at least seven brainwave frequency ranges such as alpha, delta, theta, beta. They are measured in hertz (Hz) where one Hz equals one cycle per second and each appear to have a different function in the brain.
The first EEG was recorded in 1924.
What is Biofeedback?
Biofeedback is performed using a device that among other things measures and records blood flow, brain waves, body temperature, brainwaves, muscle tension and other pertinent activities of the body. All of these measurements are then fed back to your body which in turn is used by the body to make changes and improve function and encourage wellness patterns or states.
What is Neurofeedback?
An electroencephalograph (EEG) is used in neurofeedback to measure brainwaves as a type of biofeedback. Brainwaves are measured and then the information is fed back about your brainwave activity. Neuofeedback is sometimes call neuro-integration therapy or neuro-therapy.
Traditional neurofeedback is based on operant conditioning in which audio or visual cues are used with patients in learning how to change their brain wave patterns or states. Neurofeedback has been used clinically since the 1960’s.
What is LENS?
LENS stands for Low Energy Neurofeedback System. It uses an EEG to measure your brainwaves like traditional neurofeedback. However, it is an advanced form of neurofeedback. The difference with LENS is that the feedback is in the form of a very low energy radio signal. Your digital watch has more power than the LENS, yet the potential positive changes are enormous.
The LENS is a specific kind of Neurofeedback that operates much more rapidly than traditional Neurofeedback and has qualities that make it much easier to use with people who can’t sit still.
With the LENS, the client doesn’t need to “do” anything, and there is nothing to learn. The typical session with the LENS lasts 3-4 minutes. This means that the LENS works well for people who either cannot or will not pay attention to a computer screen for longer time periods.
Additionally, the LENS works much faster than traditional Neurofeedback with the number of sessions ranging from as few as 1 to an overall average number of sessions of 20.
The LENS works well with problems of the Central Nervous System, which can be numerous.
These include symptoms of anxiety-depression spectrum, attention deficits, behavior disorders, various sleep disorders, headaches and migraines, PMS and emotional disturbances. It is for organic brain conditions such as seizures, the autism spectrum, and cerebral palsy.
These are all signs of Central Nervous System dysfunction which result in the body’s difficulty regulating itself.
LENS is not psychotherapy, mental health therapy or counseling. It is also not a diagnosis-based treatment. With LENS, treatment is for a dysfunctional brain, one that is essentially stuck in a brainwave pattern that has altered neurochemistry and maladaptive patterns.
Will LENS give me a new brain?
No. Rather LENS works to optimize the functioning of the brain you have
How does the LENS compare to other neurofeedback/biofeedback systems?
Biofeedback systems are used to train the brain to behave in a certain way utilizing operant conditioning, not unlike teaching a dog to sit by repetition. Training the brain requires many sessions that can last from 20-60 minutes or more, several times a week for months. The LENS utilizes a system based upon resetting the brain’s own neural-connectivity, which works faster and requires much less session time than attempting to train a dysfunctional brain pattern into a more functional brain pattern.
Do I need to have a serious problem to benefit from LENS?
No. LENS can benefit a very wide variety of problems that have their root in central nervous system dysregulation.
In fact, some people have used LENS to enhance their performance at work, sports or recreational activities such as golf or tennis. LENS has been shown to help people perform in a more relaxed state enhancing focus and concentration, as well as, improving memory, organization, focus and concentration.
How does the LENS work?
We apply sensors to the scalp to listen in on brainwave activity. We process the signal by computer, and information about certain key brainwave frequencies is measured and recorded. This information is fed back to the client down the sensor wires to the person’s skin and scalp through a patented process by a low energy radio wave signal for a fraction of a second.
LENS is easy. There is no need for you to do anything during a LENS session other than to sit quietly with your eyes closed for a moment. We do ask you to monitor and report changes that you observe between sessions and report them at your next session.
The results are reduction and/or elimination of the symptoms which previously interfered with the patient’s quality of life. The sessions are brief (usually 3-10 minutes), gentle (usually the client feels nothing during the session), and the changes are lasting with some exceptions: with symptoms of progressive conditions such as Parkinson’s and MS, the treatment needs to be ongoing to sustain the improvement.
Do the results of LENS last?
If the problem being addressed is one of brain dysregulation, then the answer is yes, and that covers a lot of ground. Neurofeedback involves learning by the brain and if that brings order out of disorder, the brain will continue to use its new capabilities, and thus reinforce them.
At times there are unknown issues such as early-stage degenerative disease, allergies, strong reactions to some foods or pollens, candida, Lyme disease, dysbiosis and leaky gut issues or spills and falls leading to bumps on the head. In these instances, longer courses of the LENS may be needed. And it may also be that some direct medical help may be the best course of action. The LENS can’t do everything for everybody. But it can and has made a difference that other approaches have not provided, and in general, in a much shorter time. Matters are different when we are dealing with degenerative conditions like Parkinson’s or the dementias, or when we are working against continuing insults to the system, as may be the case in the autism spectrum. In such cases, the LENS sessions may need to be continued at some level over time. Allergic susceptibilities, dysbiosis (an imbalance between the good and bad bacteria in the intestines), leaky gut and food intolerances may make it more difficult to maintain the gains. Poor digestive function will pose a problem, as does poor nutrition. A child living in a toxic environment (in either the physical or the psychological sense) may have more difficulty retaining good function.
Is neurofeedback a cure?
In the case of organic brain disorders, it can only be a matter of getting the brain to function better rather than of curing the condition. When it comes to problems of dysregulation, we would say that there is not a disease to be cured. Where dysregulation is the problem, self-regulation may very well be the remedy. But again, the word cure would not apply.
How Safe is LENS?
LENS is extremely safe, gentle and does not introduce any foreign substance into the body. The feedback signal generated is your own brainwaves with the energy 4,000 times less than that generated by your digital watch.
It is estimated that over 750,000 people have been treated with the LENS in over 4 million sessions for the past 30 plus years and there never has been a reported instance of any enduring problems or negative effects.
Ochs Labs (www.ochslabs.com) has been using LENS and its predecessors since 1990.
LENS is an FDA Class II device and is 510K exempt. Class II 510K exempt medical devices means that LENS is considered safer than 510K medical devices which would include other biofeedback and neurofeedback devices.
Does LENS have any side effects?
Some patients will on occasion experience very mild and short duration (a few hours) side effects. These may include feeling tired, wired (excess energy), spaced out, or possibly a mild headache. Side effect symptoms that last longer than a day or at most two are not related to the previous LENS treatment. In reality any of these “side effect” symptoms are a good indication that the LENS treatment is having the desired interactive effect with the brain and are a good indication that treatment will be effective.
Will LENS change or adversely affect my positive qualities such as creativity, imagination or personality?
The LENS essentially works by helping your brain disrupt brainwave patterns that you are stuck in so your brain functions in a more-healthy productive manner. It will not have any adverse effects on your other qualities. We do not expect LENS to change your personality but we do expect LENS to enhance your positive qualities and performance.
How effective is LENS?
It is estimated that over 750,000 people have been treated with the LENS in over 4 million sessions. The LENS can diminish or resolve symptoms in less than half the number of sessions compared to other neurofeedback systems. For example: mild to moderate TBI: 6 sessions, uncomplicated PTSD: 3 sessions.
About 85% of patient report the LENS treatments produced significant gains in symptom relief that are enduring after LENS treatments are completed. This is a very high rate of success and due to the reduced number of sessions needed as compared to traditional neurofeedback, LENS is a desirable economic choice. Usually there is no need to have LENS treatments on an ongoing basis. The average treatment length is from 6-20 sessions.
What is the success rate with neurofeedback?
Research it turns out that among the vast majority of clients (>95% in one clinician’s experience,) the actual outcome exceeds the prior expectations. Against such low expectations, the changes that can be produced with the LENS may even appear miraculous. One EEG Biofeedback office has a sign on its front desk: “We expect miracles.” If none occur, something has gone wrong.” What appears miraculous in all of this is really nothing more than the incredible capacity of the brain to recover function when given a chance.
Ochs Labs (www.ochslabs.com) has 30 years plus of experience with the LENS and have reported to have reached the point of having very high expectations for success in treatment. When such success is not forthcoming, or if the gains cannot hold, then there is usually a reason for that which needs to be pursued. In the normal course of events, neurofeedback ought to work with everybody. That is to say, nearly everyone should make gains that they themselves would judge to be worthwhile. Our brains are made for learning and skill-acquisition. On the other hand, many families whose expectations have been lowered by their past experience. And they need to see progress before they will share optimism. We understand that.
Who can benefit from the LENS?
The LENS can be used with patients who suffer from concussive injuries, TBI (traumatic brain injury), anxiety, depression, PTSD, OCD, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Stroke, Asperger’s, explosiveness, ADD/ADHD, Bi-Polar Disorder, MS, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, dementia, lack of motivation, seizures, headaches, migraines, substance abuse/addiction, Cerebral Palsy, PDD, etc.
What conditions does the LENS help with?
- Cognition – Problems sequencing, memory, providing and maintaining attention, concentration, clarity and organization.
- Mood – Anger, sadness, explosiveness.
- Motor – Lack of grace, problems of eye-hand coordination, balance, increased muscle tone (from spasticity) and tremor.
- Motivation – Problems initiating tasks, shifting from one activity to another, and/or completing tasks.
- Anxiety – Problems of anxiety system activity (too much uncomfortably-contained energy), persistent “anxiety”, restlessness, rumination, agitation, distractibility, difficulty breathing, palpitations, tremor exacerbation, and sleep interruption.
- Reactivity – Hyper-reactivity, hypersensitivity, multiple chemical sensitivities.
- Pain – Brain-generated pain (mis-mapping the origins and qualities of signals), and vascular pain.
- Addictions/Dependencies – Lack of clarity about emotions and self-comforting, defensiveness, argumentativeness and cynicism.
- Fatigue – Fatigue; or fatigue as a phenomenon secondary to the effort of trying to overcome the pain and/or the above impediment to functioning more easily.
- Performance Optimization – Increases in functioning in the above areas in absence of any diagnosis.
The LENS works well with symptoms of Central Nervous Symptom dysfunction. These include symptoms of ADD, ADHD, Seizures and sub-clinical seizure activity, severely disruptive behavior disorders such as Conduct Disorder, Reactive Attachment and Bipolar Disorder, Autistic spectrum and pervasive developmental delay, Cerebral palsy, concussive injuries, PTSD, Acquired Brain Injury, and Birth Trauma.
The LENS works extremely well with the symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury, no matter how long ago the incident occurred. The trauma can be from a physical blow, a concussive injury, a psychological incident (PTSD), or any other incident(s) which results in a decrease in cognitive ability.
Many children have sleep problems that can be helped such as bed wetting, sleep walking, sleep talking, teeth grinding, nightmares, and night terrors.
The LENS can also be helpful with many of the symptoms of adolescence including drug abuse, suicidal behavior, anxiety and depression.
The LENS can also help in maintaining good brain function as people age.
Do I have to stop taking medications to do LENS?
No. You do not need to stop any psychiatric or other medications as they will not interfere with how LENS works. In some patients LENS may increase the effectiveness of your medications and any changes to your medications should be discussed with your prescribing healthcare provider.
Is there research that supports neurofeedback?
Pubmed (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/), Google Scholar
Dr. Cory Hammond lists research articles about LENS Neurofeedback at the Cambridge Neurofeedback website:
How do I get started with LENS?
Please give a call to our office, Natural Medicine Institute at 352-801-0021
Will Insurance or Medicare Cover LENS Treatments?
How long do LENS sessions last?
The first LENS session may last 45-60 minutes. This will include your initial interview, a review of your LENS questionnaire and first LENS session treatment. During this session we will answer your questions, review your expectations and set some realistic goals with you.
Subsequent LENS sessions generally are about 30 minutes. The actual time using the LENS in a session is usually about 10 minutes. The other aspects of a LENS session include review of your follow up questions, assessing your progress, treatment preparation and treatment.
How many LENS sessions does it take?
There are several factors that will determine the number of sessions needed to reach your health goals.
At times there are unknown issues such as early-stage degenerative disease, allergies, strong reactions to some foods or pollens, dysbiosis and leaky gut issues or spills and falls leading to bumps on the head. In these instances, longer courses of the LENS may be needed.
Matters are different when we are dealing with degenerative conditions like Parkinson’s or the dementias, or when we are working against continuing insults to the system, as may be the case in the autism spectrum. In such cases, the LENS sessions may need to be continued at some level over time. Allergic susceptibilities, dysbiosis (an imbalance between the good and bad bacteria in the intestines), leaky gut and food intolerances may make it more difficult to maintain the gains. Poor digestive function will pose a problem, as does poor nutrition. A child living in a toxic environment (in either the physical or the psychological sense) may have more difficulty retaining good function.
Two other factors that need to be considered including how long the symptoms have been present and whether or not your symptoms came on suddenly. Recently acquired symptoms or those that came on suddenly tend to resolve in a fewer number of sessions, while symptoms that have been around for a longer time or perhaps over many years, may take more sessions to be resolved.
How do I know if the LENS treatments are working?
Your health goals are evaluated during each LENS session. After each session we encourage you to go to the Ochs Labs website and re-evaluate your top 10 health concerns. This is a good way to evaluate and track you progress.
Generally, we expect patient to experience noticeable improvement within the first six sessions. Understand that everyone is different. We often have patients that respond and notice improvement in fewer than six sessions. Each session builds on the next and the improvements that you experience consolidate as sessions progress.
How much does LENS treatment cost?
Please contact our office at 352-801-0021 for the current fee schedule.
Is LENS treatment appropriate for children?
Yes, LENS has had significant benefits for children in many cases. Issues such as anxiety, ADD, ADHD, bed wetting, OCD, dyslexia, school work performance and tics have been helped with LENS. It has been especially beneficial for children who have a difficult time with behavior issues such as ODD, anger, explosive behaviors.
Additionally, many sports programs and coaches at all levels now are recognizing the seriousness of the potential problems that occur resulting from concussion/TBI from sports related activities. LENS can be effective toward reversing and minimizing brain problems from these injuries such as headaches, attention, focus, concentration, memory and brain fog concerns.
We would be happy to discuss with you whether or not LENS may benefit your child.
How can I find a LENS provider in my area?
We have patients from around the country and overseas that travel to the Natural Medicine Institute for LENS treatments. If you are too far away, or prefer not to travel to our office please check the Ochs Labs LENS Provider List (https://www.site.ochslabs.com/about1-c1b0l) to find a LENS practitioner in your area
How can I find out more about LENS?
OCHS Labs – www.ochslabs.com
Cambridge Neurofeedback – http://www/cambridgeneurofeedback.com/rresearch/
The Healing Power of Neurofeedback: The Revolutionary LENS Technique for Restoring Optimal Brain Function by Stephen Larsen, Ph.D.
The Neurofeedback Solution: How to Treat Autism, ADHD, Anxiety, Brain Injury, Stroke, PTSD, and More by Stephen Larsen, Ph.D.
LENS: The Low Energy Neurofeedback System by D. Corydon Hammond, Ph.D.
Do we offer other services?
Yes. The Natural Medicine Institute offers a full range natural healthcare services and treatment including, acupuncture, chiropractic, diet, functional medicine, lifestyle coaching, nutrition coaching, vitamins, herbs, homeopathic supplements.
See our 12 Step Protocol on this website