Biofeedback is a form of therapy that uses mechanical devices to train people to gain conscious control of bodily functions that are otherwise out of conscious awareness. This newly learned control can be used to improve overall physical health and emotional well-being. There are several forms of biofeedback that track various bodily functions, Shore Neuropsychology utilizes HeartMath technology to measure heart rate variability (HRV) and teach patients techniques that promote coherent heart rhythms for physiological and mental well-being.
The mind-body connection has long been studied, as well as trended in research within the past decade. Our brains continually send messages for bodily functions, but also receive important messages from the body to help us perceive our environment. In particular, our hearts communicate complex neurological, hormonal, electromagnetic, and pressure information both to our brains and bodies. How we interpret and respond to our environments is intrinsically linked to this connection. In other words, just as our emotions and thoughts impact our bodily systems, our bodily systems send messages that result in emotions and thoughts.
While traditional talk therapies provide guidance to cognitive processes and alternative coping strategies, biofeedback therapy taps into the bodily experiences. HRV biofeedback provides a gateway to the messages that the heart is sending to our brains, while teaching specific techniques to alter initial interpretations of our environments, or manage our physiological responses received from the brain. Through measuring heart rhythms and engaging in cardiac coherence techniques, biofeedback therapy provides an opportunity to learn and practice skills that promote optimal HRV patterns to shift out of depleting physiological/emotional/cognitive patterns and into replenishing ones. Being in these HRV patterns promotes synchronicity in various bodily systems resulting in optimal functioning. Experiences and tools gained within session can then be practiced and applied outside of session to fit your individual needs.
Biofeedback techniques can be beneficial to all who want to enhance their resilience to stress and well-being, and in conjunction within individual psychotherapy and medical care, can be beneficial in managing: