Biofeedback Chair Therapy for Addiction
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What is Biofeedback Chair Therapy?
Biofeedback chair therapy is a method of learning how to control stress responses through increased control over bodily functions. Some examples are controlling breathing, lowering blood pressure, and decreasing your heart rate. This therapy type is an excellent tool to learn and take with you once you have completed an inpatient treatment program.
Biofeedback chair therapy is effective in treating addiction, especially when there is an underlying mental health issue. Up to 50% of addicts have a secondary underlying mental health issue. Biofeedback is useful in treating other mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, ADHD, and PTSD.
How Does Biofeedback Chair Therapy Work?
A biofeedback chair therapy session involves monitoring your responses to stress such as body temperature, breathing, heart rate, and brain waves, teaching you to control them while monitoring effectiveness. It is not painful, and no needles or medications are administered. Deep breathing exercises, music, sounds, meditation, and focused images are a few of the techniques used.
You may learn to think positive thoughts, while deep-breathing is one example. Rather than fearing the worst in a situation, you can learn to avoid disaster scenarios, focus on the present, and control your old habits. When control of your negative responses happens, your breathing regulates, and your heart rate decreases.
When this happens, the monitor alerts you to what just worked so you can repeat those same strategies. Biofeedback is a useful lifelong internal coping mechanism.
Different Methods of Biofeedback
Biofeedback chair therapy can involve different methods. The most common is EMG, which measures muscle activity and tension, thermal or temperature biofeedback, and EEG. Some biofeedback centers also utilize EDG, which measure the sweating levels on the surface of your skin.
During a session, the therapist will gather your information while going through different scenarios and monitor your physical responses. Each of these different monitoring types sends the data to understand which things bother you and which do not. When you are stressed, the monitors will alert you and then you will practice different techniques to lower your responses.
Throughout several sessions, you will gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your stress responses. You will also learn what strategies work best for you. Through your sessions, you will try different methods to relax. There may be some trial and error until you know what works best for you. Biofeedback is a highly individualized and customized practice.
Understanding Biofeedback for Addiction
Why has biofeedback been used in addiction treatment? Increased feelings of stress may be a trigger to either drink or use drugs as a coping mechanism. Once your stressors are recognized and under control with specific body response management, the triggers will be reduced. The more confident you become in handling stress, the less likely you turn to drugs or alcohol.
Once you have learned biofeedback management responses, you can utilize this new skill whenever you need it, which is another step in preparing for life outside of the inpatient rehab’s protective walls. Learning how to control your actions, responses, and triggers build newfound confidence as you navigate rehab’s uncertain time and live a sober life. Living life on life’s terms requires building resilience and coping strategies.
Biofeedback is one method of practicing those skills during stressful moments. Biofeedback can be continued on an outpatient basis and practiced at home, utilizing smartphone apps and smartwatches. Eventually, your coping strategies will become second nature and will be a new healthy habit. Continual replacement of negative behaviors with positive habits improves your chances of maintaining sobriety long-term.
What is a Biofeedback Chair?
When having a biofeedback session, you may recline in a chair specially designed for monitoring. It is usually made of soft fabric to help ease into a relaxed state. This chair may have sensors to detect body changes. There may be audio added into the chair to help you with positive thoughts.
Screens may be in the room surrounding the biofeedback chair to see guided images and allow the therapist to see you. Once you have learned what works for you, you can continue biofeedback practice without specialized equipment in the comfort of your own home. A specific chair may be useful in orienting to the procedure but is not required for maintenance.
What are the Benefits of Biofeedback with Addiction?
Biofeedback is uniquely effective in managing addiction for several reasons. When EEG biofeedback therapy was used in a mixed substance use study, scientific evidence pointed towards positive outcomes when EEG biofeedback therapy was used in mixed substance use. The patients receiving biofeedback showed greater success rates of patients staying in rehab and improved sobriety at one year.
Biofeedback gives skills that traditional therapies do not teach. It can help you control your thoughts and reactions to situations that would typically produce high anxiety and concern levels. Teaching self-control is a critical tool in managing addiction and changing addictive behaviors. Other benefits of biofeedback are:
- no use of medications
- eases withdrawal symptoms
- improved sleep
- improved mood and emotions
- renewed focus and attention
- increased self-confidence
- healing in traumatic events that may be a source of continuing pain and trigger for addiction
- decreased anxiety and provide a sense of calm during treatment
- prevents patients from leaving treatment against medical advice
Do you want treatment but are worried about how you can pay for it? We have a team of financial professionals who provide free insurance verification. We will work with you to determine how to move forward with the treatment in a way that works for you and your financial situation.
How to Get Help
At Resurgence Behavioral Health, we are familiar with the complexities and challenges of treating addiction. Our progressive methods of healing combined with traditional treatments offer a well-rounded addiction treatment experience.
We have helped many begin the path towards recovery and healing. If you are looking for peace and balance in your life, call (855) 458-0050 to schedule your consultation. We are here to help.