What’s Better For ADHD: Neurofeedback Or Medications?

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When it comes to reducing or eliminating symptoms associated with attention deficit disorder (ADD/ADHD), there are many different approaches. A recent university study sought to determine which was better, a physiological approach (medications) or a neurological one (neurofeedback). Both have their benefits, but which one does more to alleviate symptoms: Let’s find out.

A 2018 study by Erasmus University’s department of psychology in the Netherlands conducted 8 randomized trials to see if there was a significant difference between both methods. Medications alone were determined to offer short term relief of symptoms, but also noted that prolonged use of them tended to diminish their effectiveness.

Next they tested neurofeedback. While the test did not definitively support neurofeedback as a standalone treatment, it did determine that those who had neurofeedback training were able to reduce their medication doses and maintain that reduction at a 6 month follow up. The review determined that neurofeedback works effectively as an adjunct therapy for children suffering from ADHD.

“The present role of NF in treating children diagnosed with ADHD should be considered as complementary in a multimodal treatment approach, individualized to the needs of the child, and may be considered a viable alternative to stimulants for a specific group of patients. ” -Bashar Razoki, Department of Psychology, Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, the Netherlands This study also concluded that patients with a poor response to medication or side effects due to medication may benefit from NF treatment.

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