Neurofeedback 101: Everything You Need to Know

Futuristic image of a woman looking at a levitating brain.

Written By: Dr. Starr, MD, FAACAP

Dr. Starr is a medical doctor, psychiatrist and computational neuroscientist who has been active in Brain-Computer Interface and Neurofeedback since 1990.

To learn more about neurofeedback, please read the article; What Is Neurofeedback. If you are interested in home neurofeedback please read the article; Neurofeedback At Home.

Neurofeedback 101: Everything You Need to Know Before Starting Neurofeedback At Home

Neurofeedback therapy is an intriguing and innovative approach to understanding and influencing brain activity. It’s a non-invasive method that has garnered attention from mental health enthusiasts looking to optimize their cognitive functions, enhance focus, reduce anxiety, and improve overall mental well-being. If you’re curious about starting neurofeedback at home, you’re at the right place. This comprehensive guide is designed to ease beginners into the concept and process of neurofeedback therapy.

Understanding Neurofeedback

Neurofeedback, also known as EEG Biofeedback, is based on the principle of operant conditioning. This therapy involves monitoring the brain’s electrical activity using sensors placed on the scalp. By presenting this information in real-time through visual or auditory feedback, individuals can learn to control or alter their brainwave patterns. Essentially, neurofeedback trains your brain to function more efficiently.

The Science Behind Neurofeedback

At its core, neurofeedback addresses the brain’s ability to adapt—what scientists call neuroplasticity. This therapy capitalizes on this adaptability, encouraging the brain to form new connections and rid itself of unproductive patterns. Various studies have shown its effectiveness in improving attention, reducing anxiety, and managing symptoms of ADHD, among other benefits.

How Neurofeedback Works

During a neurofeedback session, you’ll wear a headset equipped with sensors. These sensors detect brainwaves, which are then displayed on a computer screen. You might be asked to play a video game, watch a movie, or listen to music as part of the therapy. When your brain produces desirable patterns, the game progresses, the movie plays uninterrupted, or the music continues. This positive reinforcement trains your brain to adopt those advantageous patterns over time.

Preparing for Your First Session At Home

Starting neurofeedback at home has become increasingly accessible with the advent of user-friendly devices and online platforms. Here’s what to expect and how to prepare for your first session:

  1. Choose the Right Provider: Invest in a reputable neurofeedback provider. Learn more on how to select a neurofeedback provider.
  2. Create a Comfortable Setup: Find a quiet and comfortable space where you won’t be disturbed. Ensure your device is charged and ready to use, and set up your laptop or smartphone according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  3. Understand the Process: Familiarize yourself with how the session will work. Most apps will guide you through the process, so take some time to explore the app and its features before starting.
  4. Set Realistic Goals: Define what you hope to achieve with neurofeedback. Whether it’s improving concentration, reducing stress, or enhancing sleep quality, setting goals can help track your progress.
  5. Maintain Consistency: Neurofeedback requires regular practice for noticeable results. Commit to a schedule that fits your lifestyle, but aim for consistency in your sessions.

What to Expect

It’s normal to feel unsure about what to expect during your initial sessions. Here are a few common experiences:

  • Adjustment Period: It may take some time to get used to the sensations and the process of interacting with your brain’s feedback.
  • Gradual Improvement: The effects of neurofeedback build up over time. Regular and consistent sessions are key to experiencing significant benefits.
  • Personalized Experiences: Remember that neurofeedback is a highly personalized process. The experience and outcomes can vary significantly from person to person.

Safety and Efficacy

Neurofeedback is considered a safe technique, especially when conducted under professional guidance using FDA certified devices. While it is an effective tool for many, it’s crucial to maintain realistic expectations and continue any prescribed treatments or therapies. Always consult a healthcare professional before starting new mental health practices.


Neurofeedback presents an exciting frontier in personal mental health management. With the availability of home devices, it’s more accessible than ever to those interested in exploring this technology. Remember, the key to successful neurofeedback is patience, persistence, and consistency. By understanding your brain’s signals and learning how to influence them, you’re taking a proactive step toward enhancing your mental health and well-being

Myneurva Is A Global Leader In Neurofeedback and QEEG Analysis

Myneurva is a global leader in computational QEEG analysis. Dr. Starr holds the US patent for a System and method for analyzing electroencephalogram signals.

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