Biofeedback for Anxiety: Does it Work?
Spoiler alert: the science says it does.
40 million Americans are anxious, and a global pandemic that seemingly won’t end is understandably making it worse. Anxiety, often accompanied by depression, is not only an American issue but a global phenomenon. Over 4% of the global population (275 million people) face anxiety – and these stats are pre-2020. It doesn’t come as a surprise with the countless triggers people face every day such as the climate crisis, political unrest, uncertainty about the future, not to mention work stress and interactions with others. Personal relationships, whether it be at the office, friendships, or romantic partnerships may also influence your mental state, how you cope, and how you face anxiety.
When your brain is overstimulated, it’s experiencing what the medical community often calls “abnormal” brain waves. What this really means is that these brain waves have different ranges compared to a brain, not in this overstimulated state. These variations in brain wave activity are why you may experience spiraling thoughts, a rise in heart rate, sweaty palms, a tingling sensation, or the feeling that you’re on a rollercoaster (when you’re actually just sitting at your office desk.) It’s often considered “normal” to react to certain situations with anxiety, but when your reaction is disproportionate to the event that’s triggering it, anxiety can become debilitating.
Read more on Reflect.