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Stuttering and Neurofeedback

stuttering neurofeedback

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#1 JR7

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Posted 23 February 2013 - 04:06 AM

A few months ago I created a thread in the Supplement section, hoping to find some supplements that would assist me in "curing" my developmental stuttering. Since, I have been involved in Neurofeedback with a facility that offers it here in Las Vegas. As of now, I have had 11neurofeedback sessions, each lasting 1 hour. I purchased a total of 21 sessions. To describe briefly, a session consists of me sitting in a chair and staring at a monitor. From there, 3 electrodes are adhered to my scalp, ear lobe using a gel-like substance. For the first 10 sessions, we have worked the right side of the brain, both the Frontal Lobe and the Parietal Lobe. The neurotherapists are initially wanting to work the right brain as they believe anxiety has some influence on my stuttering, which to a degree it does, though not the cause. I also feel they have more experience working with anxiety issues than a speech impediment.
The electrodes are then connected to a handheld amplifier which amplify the brain signals they detect. From there, the signals are sent to a computer and displayed on a software with a UI Im not too familiar with nor have they gone into much detail about. The software outputs images to another large display, which is the display I am staring at. The images are made to look like different video games. There are several with the same theory behind them, so I will describe the one Ive been choosing consistently. I am basically looking at a spaceship flying through a tunnel. There is a reward system in place here, where the reward is the spaceship speeding up as well as a lot of exhaust emanating from its tail end. My brain is able to produce more speed/exhaust by matching the wavelength the software is running on at that moment. It's the reward wavelength. When my brain has not matched the wavelength, the spaceship moves very slowly with little to no exhaust. This is all very passive and I have no conscious control over the outcome. If you need more of an explanation, ask away.
Now the results so far. Well, after 11 sessions I have no discernible affects on my speech. But, I have had massive results with any anxiety I may have had. I have noticed several times where I am in environments where I would usually be keyed up (airport/concert/casino), I am completely at ease and relaxed. The sensation is as if I had taken a benzodiazepine, but without the mental fog. It's just a complete overall excellent sense of well being. I recall being in the Las Vegas airport la few weeks ago, picking up my girlfriend, and I was thinking wow, Im insanely relaxed right now. And I in no way anticipated this result. Again, it's like being on a benzo but with mental clarity and focus. So far Ive been pleasantly surprised with this. To be honest, I am not sure if this will "cure" my suttering in any way (we have not touched the left side brain yet), but my God if these effects are long term the quality of life improvement will be incredible.
They anticipate I may need 40 - 60 sessions. It's insanely expensive. I purchased a package of 20 sessions which was $2K. That by far has been the only downside to this, and a big one at that.

The neurotherapists will now work the left side Temporal Lobe area, where speech mechanics are. Stuttering seems to be a mystery to them so we are going into unchartered waters.
That's my story so far. I will continue to update. Any input or experiences would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
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#2 Ozbuck

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 07:54 AM

I'm really interested to hear how the rest of your sessions went and what affects it had on your stuttering and any other insights?!

I have a stutter myself and I'm trying to dial into treating it with diet and other methods.

I've just starting taking 300mg of b1 and eat a paleo type diet.


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#3 JR7

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 06:37 AM

Hello. I apologize for the delayed response. I'm typing from a phone here so unfortunately this will lack the detail I'd like. In short, neurofeedback did not affect my stuttering. It did drastically affect my life though, for the better. I became a better person emotionally in every way possible.
As for the stuttering, there was and is a lot of potential for NFB as a treatment. The technicians and I were never able to find which areas of the brain were the cause.

Sent from my SPH-L720 using Tapatalk 4

#4 3AlarmLampscooter

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 07:03 AM

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But in all seriousness, ever tried propranolol? http://journals.psyc.../3432/1071a.pdf

Back when I was going through a lot of stress, I'd get panic attacks on occasion that were accompanied by stuttering like W-W-Walter. Jr, and propranolol knocked 'em out extremely well.

Edited by 3AlarmLampscooter, 16 September 2013 - 07:06 AM.

#5 JR7

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 05:37 PM

There is a really interesting theory that stutterers have excessive amounts of dopamine in the Basal Ganglia area. Dr Gerald Maguire is currently running clinical trials in California for anti-dopamine drugs on stutterers. I received an invite to the trials but declined. I have tried MANY avenues to alleviate my stuttering, but none has really worked. Stuttering affects only %1 of the population and therefore gets very little funding for research. I have not tried propranolol but have heard great things about it. Is this prescribed through a Psych?

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#6 jadamgo

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 11:14 PM

Psychs prescribe it, but you can often get it from a regular old doctor by saying you have public speaking anxiety and you don't want to take benzos because you're afraid of getting addicted.
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