What Is Biofeedback?

According to the Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback (AAPB), Biofeedback Certification Institution of America (BCIA), and the International Society for Neurofeedback and Research (ISNR), biofeedback is defined as such:

“Biofeedback is a process that enables an individual to learn how to change physiological activity for the purposes of improving health and performance. Precise instruments measure physiological activity such as brainwaves, heart function, breathing, muscle activity, and skin temperature. These instruments rapidly and accurately ‘feed back’ information to the user. The presentation of this information—often in conjunction with changes in thinking, emotions, and behavior—supports desired physiological changes. Over time, these changes can endure without continued use of an instrument.”

To simplify the definition, biofeedback is a type of therapy that uses electronic instrumentation to monitor unconscious habit patterns and physiological activities of the human body. Feedback will be provided after the therapy. Through these feedbacks, one can be informed of the abnormalities in his or her habit patterns and physiological activities so that immediate response can be done to reduce the symptoms of possible illness.

Biofeedback determines and monitors chronic benign problems such as migraine, muscle tension, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD. Urinary and fecal incontinence can also be treated through biofeedback therapy according to the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research.

But, do you know that you have used biofeedback without even knowing it? A simple use of thermometer to monitor your body temperature is already an example of biofeedback. Likewise, when you check on your grandparent’s blood pressure, you use biofeedback. Remember, biofeedback monitors a certain condition of the human body and reports the results to you in real time.
Specialists have considered biofeedback as an alternative medicine because it allows a person to know right away what could be the problem in his or her system then control it, have it treated immediately, and monitor on his or her own. This technique prevents abnormal health conditions from worsening.

However, there are certain illnesses that need medical intervention. Hospitals and medical clinics have biofeedback machines for brain activity, hypertension, muscle tension, stress monitoring, and so forth. Some samples of biofeedback machines are: electroencephalography (EEG) machine for brain activity monitoring, surface electromyography (sEMG) machine for tension and migraine, and GSR2 or emWave PC for panic attacks, chronic anxiety, and stress.

Biofeedback has been proven to be completely safe, efficient, and accurate so do not stress out to undergo the therapy. You won’t regret it.