The Science behind Sphere

In order to drive mental health treatment into the future, we need to be open to leveraging evidence-based technology to cater to a growing number of patients.

There is no doubt that technology tools enabling assessment and customised treatment to the individual needs of the patient will play a vital part in the future of mental health treatment.

Real innovation lies in rethinking what we treat and how – for anxiety, PTSD and stress, we have already seen a shift from treating the thinking centre, to treating the emotional centre of the brain.

Dr. Michael Bott

Consultant Psychiatrist

What is Neurofeedback?

Neurofeedback is a highly effective treatment that has been used for years but in the doctors office. Now you can have access to digitised Neurofeedback through your smartphone and help to improve your emotional responses to trauma, stressful situations and anxiety. Digitised Neurofeedback helps you reset unhealthy, negative cycles developed over time. 

A disrupted brain

Your body’s many systems are constantly responding to changes in your internal and external environments. Functions like respiratory rate, heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature are continually adjusted to keep you in a state of balance. Your brain handles all of this subconsciously, but any disruption to this balance through trauma, stress or anxiety can hamper the brain’s ability to do this.

guy on his headphones listening to music

Brain waves and patterns

Following a traumatic event, the typical stress-induced ‘flight or flight’ response initiates a cascade of physiological changes you have no control over. Symptoms may include; increased heart rate and blood pressure, breathing becomes fast and shallow, and blood gets directed away from your brain and into your muscles. As far as the brain is concerned, every time you relive the traumatic event in your mind, it is re-traumatising and becomes more and more established. Digitised Neurofeedback can break this cycle or prevent it from happening in the first place.

Break the disrupted pattern

To fully understand Neurofeedback, we need a basic understanding of brain waves. Your brain cells generate electricity to communicate with each other and this electrical activity forms patterns called brain waves. Scientists have found five main patterns of brain waves: alpha, beta, delta, gamma, and theta. Each brain wave state corresponds to a different state of awareness.

For example, alpha waves occur when you are relaxed. Beta waves are associated with alertness, but when maintained for too long can lead to feelings of fear and anxiety (for example with the ‘flight or flight’ response). So, if you are feeling stressed or anxious, helping the brain to increase alpha waves whilst decreasing beta wave activity can reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. The Sphere technology can help you do this.