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Unlocking Hope: The Potential of Neurofeedback in Long COVID Recovery

Feb 28, 2024

By Zara Dureno, BA, MOT

Introduction

Long COVID, a persistent and often debilitating condition that follows the acute phase of COVID-19, has left many individuals grappling with a range of symptoms affecting various aspects of their health. As the medical community explores diverse approaches to alleviate these lingering effects, one promising avenue gaining attention is neurofeedback. This non-invasive therapy has shown potential in addressing cognitive and neurological symptoms associated with long COVID.

Understanding Neurofeedback

Neurofeedback, also known as EEG biofeedback, is a therapeutic technique that involves real-time monitoring of brain activity through electrodes placed on the scalp. This data is then fed back to the individual, allowing them to learn how to regulate their brain function. While traditionally used for conditions such as ADHD and anxiety, its application in long COVID recovery is an emerging area of interest.

1. Cognitive Function Improvement

Long COVID often manifests with cognitive impairments, commonly referred to as “brain fog.” Neurofeedback has shown promise in enhancing cognitive function by training the brain to regulate and optimize its activity. This can result in improved focus, memory, and mental clarity for individuals grappling with cognitive challenges post-COVID.

2. Stress and Anxiety Reduction

The aftermath of a severe illness can bring about heightened stress and anxiety levels. Neurofeedback has demonstrated effectiveness in reducing stress by promoting a balanced and calm brain state. Through sessions, individuals can learn to regulate their stress response, potentially easing the emotional toll associated with long COVID.

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3. Neuroplasticity and Healing

The brain’s ability to reorganize itself, known as neuroplasticity, is a key element in recovery. Neurofeedback taps into this concept by encouraging the brain to adapt and rewire itself. This adaptability may aid in mitigating the neurological symptoms experienced by individuals with long COVID, fostering a more efficient and resilient nervous system.

4. Tailored Treatment for Varied Symptoms

Long COVID presents a spectrum of symptoms that can differ widely among individuals. Neurofeedback’s adaptability allows for personalized treatment plans tailored to address specific symptoms. Whether it’s addressing sleep disturbances, headaches, or other neurological issues, neurofeedback can be customized to target the unique challenges faced by each individual.

Conclusion

While the study of neurofeedback in the context of long COVID is still in its early stages, the promising results observed in related neurological conditions suggest that this therapy holds significant potential. As researchers delve deeper into understanding the intricate connections between brain function and long COVID symptoms, neurofeedback stands as a beacon of hope for those seeking effective and tailored approaches to recovery. As we navigate the complex landscape of post-COVID health, neurofeedback emerges as a promising ally in restoring both cognitive and emotional well-being.

At the Surrey Neuroplasticity Clinic, we offer a take-home neurofeedback device and program guided by trained clinicians. Contact us to learn more!

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