Career challenge no match for neurofeedback

submitted by Maria Di Donato DEd, BCN, PA Licensed Psychologist, PA/NJ Certified School Psychologist

Trisha (not her real name), a young adult woman from Buckingham struggled with anxiety, intrusive thoughts and irritability which affected her ability to make post high school plans regarding her future direction.

She seemed to be stuck. Some difficulties she reported were being easily distracted, easily annoyed, not feeling motivated, worrying about small things, having test anxiety and compulsive behaviors.

More specifically, Trisha reported that she was generally fearful, often upset, experienced panic attacks, PMS, worried excessively, experienced shaking and trembling, felt tearful, had tense muscles and always felt on edge.

She also was shy around others, felt timid and reserved, was easily embarrassed, gave up easily, and showed little or no self-confidence. Sleep issues included difficulty falling asleep, restless sleep, early awakenings, sometimes night sweats and nightmares. She reported a fear of driving due to a prior accident. 

Trisha’s treatment started with neurofeedback and counseling to address her anxiety. After a few sessions she reported having more energy, feeling less hyper, happier, and physically better. Gradually she began to smile more in session.

Treatment included autogenic training to improve calming in the office and at home. An early goal was to get her driving license which she was able to initiate after a few months of treatment. She also was able to enroll in a few classes at the community college.

Anxiety was slowly overcome as she began to find part time work that was suitable for her. She is reporting improved self-confidence, and overall reduced anxiety. She is beginning to report less intrusive “background anxiety” as she starts to take control.

Treatment is ongoing with the positive combination of neurofeedback, counseling and autogenic training to help her to manage her life and form a more positive attitude about her future career direction.

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