Archive for Brain Wave Optimization

Retail Therapy

It’s not exactly an intelligence test, but can you find the link: 1,200 pairs of shoes, wretched excess and political corruption and long-term self-directed psychotherapy. A clue: It’s not Imelda Marcos (although few of our readers would recognize or remember the name of the wife of the one-time Philippine dictator).

 

The answer: “Retail therapy.”

 

Imelda, of course, was so famous for her shoe collection – found in the presidential palace and other sites around Manila after her husband’s overthrow – that she became a supermodel for wretched excess and political corruption. But, if the wives of infamous dictators like Marcos and Syria’s Assad are notorious for their lavish spending, it may be that they’re simply saving on psychiatric bills. Hey, nobody ever said it’s easy being the wife of a murderous dictator and, a woman’s got to save a little spending money somewhere. After all, consumers often shop to cope with stressful situations.

 

However, researchers Soo Kim and Derek D. Rucker of the Kellogg School of Management (Northwestern University) now report that consumers are much more selective when it comes to shopping as a way of coping with future challenges.

 

While it’s been well-established that “retail therapy” is a common (sometimes expensive) coping mechanism after stressful experiences challenge an individual’s self-image – they shop to “forget about it” and distract themselves, the researchers found that consumers also shop when facing potential future challenges to their self-image. They practice retail therapy proactively and to protect themselves against potential challenges.

 

However, the researchers found proactive consumers are very selective in choosing only products that are specific to the potentially negative situation. For example, buying “smart water” before a math test or the Law School Admissions Test or that “absolutely perfect outfit” for a class reunion with once very judgmental classmates – guarding themselves against others’ perceptions of being a failure at some level.

 

“Prior to receiving any negative feedback, consumers select products that are specifically associated with bolstering or guarding the part of the self that might come under attack,” the authors conclude in “Bracing for the Psychological Storm: Proactive versus Reactive Compensatory Consumption” in the December 2012 edition of the . Journal of Consumer Research. “After receiving negative feedback, consumers seem to increase their consumption more generally as consumption may serve as a means to distract them from the negative feedback.”

Stress  is still another area in which the Brain Training Centers of Florida help individuals by using brain wave optimization.  For further information, please call (305) 412-5050.

 

 

Francis J. (Skip) Flynn, Psy. D.

 

Posted in: Brain Training, Brain Wave Optimization, Stress

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Lack of Sleep – “A Perfect Storm”

It may be a “perfect storm” of mental and physical health plagues.

In three new studies, researchers at Penn State University have reported that obesity and depression are the two main culprits contributing to day-to-day excessive sleepiness and fatigue.

“The ‘epidemic’ of sleepiness parallels an ‘epidemic’ of obesity and psychosocial stress,” said Alexandros Vgontzas, MD, the principal investigator for three Penn State studies. “Weight loss, depression and sleep disorders should be our priorities in terms of preventing the medical complications and public safety hazards associated with this excessive sleepiness.”

The Penn State researchers, who presented their findings at the Boston Sleep 2012 conference in June, examined a random population of 1,741 adults and determined that obesity and emotional stress are the main culprits of the current national “epidemic” of sleepiness and fatigue. In addition, insufficient sleep and obstructive sleep apnea play a role and have been linked to hypertension (high blood pressure), stroke, depression, diabetes, obesity and accidents.

Two-hundred and twenty-two of the 1,721 participants in the Penn State study initially reported excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) and, for those whose EDS persisted at the time of follow-up – seven and a half years later – weight gain was the strongest predicting factor. “In fact, our results showed that in individuals who lost weight, excessive sleepiness improved,” Vgontzas reported.

In a second follow-up – seven and a half years later – researchers found that depression and obesity are the strongest risk factors for new-onset excessive sleepiness, a finding confirmed by a third study – this time of 103 research volunteers.

“The primary finding connecting our three studies are that depression and obesity are the main risk factors for both new-onset and persistent excessive sleepiness,” Vgontzas said.

The findings regarding EDS are important because it is linked to significant health risks and on-the-job accidents.

The bottom line: sleep disorders are just a “little problem.” Their accompanied by or cause a wide range of often life-threatening problems. If the persists beyond a difficult night or two, address them or risk being drowned in your own sleep-related “perfect storm.”

The Brain Training Centers of Florida are helping people improve their sleep without medication utilizing brain wave optimization seven days a week. Please contact us at 305-412-5050 with any questions.

Posted in: Brain Wave Optimization, Sleep Issues

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Life Changing Experience for 55 Year Old Man

Over the past 15 years I have seen and been an acquaintance of this gentlemen. He has been in and out of alcoholics anonymous the whole time. He has not been able to put together more than one year of continuous sobriety. Last year I spoke with him for about twenty minutes describing what we do and how we could help him. Unfortunately he did not come in to our office for our cognitive behavioral therapy combined with brain wave optimization (including HIRREM technology). He has suffered for another whole year fighting to get one month to three months of sobriety at a time. I ran into him again last week. He was just coming back from another relapse. He was miserable and pretty much hopeless. I implored him to come in for help with us. He finally agreed and started his sessions last Thursday (March 2, 2011). He had a two hour brain wave optimization session on Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday. I met with him on Monday to discuss his progress right before he did his session. He told me that he plays in a band on Friday nights and that after he is done playing, his urges to use become over-powering. He typically could not resist them. On last Friday night, the day after his first session, his urges were almost gone. They had become nothing more than quick ideas that were easily dismissed. He stated that he is feeling more relaxed and at peace than he has in years. He can literally feel his life changing right now!!!!

It is another great day at The Brain Training Centers of Florida.

-Geoff Cole

Posted in: Addiction, Brain Wave Optimization

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Today in Brain Training: February 25th, 2011

Geoff Cole | Brain Training Centers Of Florida | Masters III CertificationThe past three weeks have been very eventful at The Brain training Centers of Florida. We have been utilizing our brain wave optimization (aka brain state conditioning) technology licensed through Brain State technologies and cognitive behavioral therapy to help our clients overcome their issues.

These issues include but are not limited to; Alcohol/cocaine addiction, anxiety, panic attacks, ADD/ADHD, depression, weight loss, auditory processing issues, anger, and sleep issues.

We also performed stress and anxiety reduction protocol at the NewLife Expo. It has been another great couple of weeks here at The Brain Training Centers of Florida.

-Geoff Cole

Posted in: Brain Training, Brain Wave Optimization

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In Brain Training Today: December 29th, 2010 – Opiate Withdrawal

The major theme this week has been helping people with Opiate Detox and Withdrawal. We have been amazingly helpful for five different people dealing with various stages of opiate detoxification and withdrawal. If you have been through this or know someone who has, you can begin to understand how important it is that our Brain Wave Optimization (brain state conditioning) technology and cognitive behavioral therapy help reduce the withdrawal symptoms dramatically. The majority of people who try to detox from opiates are unsuccessful. Through our process we are not only helping people to get off the opiates, we are helping them to change their lives, reduce their pain (physical and mental), and are helping them stay off the opiates.

We have also been helping several other people reduce their anxiety and improve their focus, concentration and sleep; as well as their overall wellbeing.

Posted in: Addiction, Brain Wave Optimization

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In Brain Training Today: December 22,2010

We are currently in the process of helping 14 different people with issues including but not limited to;

– Depression

– Eating disorders

– Relationship Issues (Divorce)

– Addiction Issues

– Alcohol Abuse Issues

– Cerebral Palsey

– Excess Anxiety Issues

– Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

– Anxiety and or Panic Attacks

– Opiate Withdrawal

Our clients are enjoying tremendous success and relief from these issues today in The Brain Training Centers of Florida. We utilize Brain Wave Optimization (aka Brain State Conditioning) combined with cognitive behavioral therapy to assist our clients in overcoming their issues. Please client testimonials at youtube (search The Brain Training Centers of Florida), here under “Testimonials” and a new testimonial at http://www.gasparinutrition.com/blog/?p=3270/

Happy Holidays

-Geoff Cole

Posted in: Brain Training, Brain Wave Optimization

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Link Found Between Testosterone and Sleep

New research indicates that beds and male testosterone levels may have something more in common than sex. A researcher at the University of Montreal Department of Psychology has discovered a link between testosterone levels in men and their quality of sleep.

It’s long been known that testosterone levels begin to drop by one or two percent a year beginning at approximately age 30. But by age 40, men’s quality of sleep also begins to diminish.

Zoran Sekerovic, a graduate student, presented his findings at the annual conference of the Association Francophone Pour le Savoir (ACFAS). He reported a link between testosterone levels in men over 50 and their Phases III and IV sleep. While in young men, deep sleep represents 10 to 20 percent of total sleep, by age 50 it decreases to five to seven percent and can disappear altogether for men over 60.

The study found no correlation with other parts of the sleep cycle: falling asleep, Phases I and II, or paradoxical sleep, when most dreaming occurs.

It appears that the neuronal circuits of men in their 20s are essentially intact but, with aging, there is a loss of neuronal circuits and the quality of synchronization of cerebral activity begins to deteriorate slightly – perhaps accounting for a loss of deep sleep, which requires greater synchronization. “Lower levels of testosterone intensify the lack of synchronization and explain 20 percent of men’s inability to experience deep sleep,” explains Sekerovic.

He suggests that decreasing testosterone levels are what impact sleep, not vice-versa.

“The loss of deep sleep is a serious problem that could be treated with testosterone,” observes Sekerovic. “That would be tremendous progress. But hormone therapy can have secondary effect. Therefore, it will be essential to better understand the mechanisms leading to the loss of deep sleep.”

“Sekerovic’s suggestions have great potential for increasing the quality of sleep for many men,” notes Francis J. Flynn, Psy.D.,CAP, president of the Brain Training Centers of Florida. “I frequently encourage men with sleep problems to take a number of positive steps including increasing the quantity and quality of their cardio-vascular/aerobic workouts, adding weight/strength training, and requesting that their physicians conduct testosterone level blood tests.”

In addition, Flynn reports, his office runs a full scale electroencephalographic study of clients’ brains to determine if specific areas of the brain increase their activity levels at night.

“It seems counter-intuitive but in the vast majority of Brain Training clients who complain of sleep difficulties and report rarely waking feeling rested and refreshed the activity levels of their brains actually increases when their eyes are closed. That makes restful sleep extremely difficult. By reversing this process, we can quickly and easily restore healthy sleep – often after years of restless nights,” reports Flynn. “And, of course, the greatest advantages are that we can do this without medication and frequently within four or five days.”

At the Brain Training Centers of Florida we utilize Brain Wave Optimization to assist our clients with their sleep. After training their brains with us, most of our clients have improved their sleeping patterns which in turn has benefited the chemical balances of their b

Francis J. (Skip) Flynn, Psy. D.

Posted in: Brain Wave Optimization, Sleep Issues

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Study Proves Men and Women’s Brains Handle Stress Differently

(Not) Startling new news from the World of Science: Men’s Brains and Women’s Brains function differently under stress.

Using a functional magnetic resonance imaging machine (fMRI), researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have shown that men and women differ in response to stressful situations: Men experience increased blood flow to the left orbitofrontal cortex, suggesting activation of the “fight or flight” response; in women there is increased activation of the limbic system, which is associated with emotional responses.

The researchers studied the brains of 16 men and 16 women and were able to directly visualize – in real time – what the human brain does during stress, according to Jiongiong Wang, Ph.D., a research assistant professor of radiology and neurology at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Moderate stress was induced by asking subjects to count backward by 13, starting at 1.600. researchers monitored the subject’s heart rate and blood flow to the brain; they also checked for the stress hormone cortisol. They In men, stress resulted in increased blood flow to the right prefrontal cortex, responsible for the “fight or flight” response, while will had increased blood flow in the limbic system, associated with a more nurturing and friendly response.

The researchers also found that the changes in the brain during stress response also lasted longer in women.

In stressful situations, the adrenal glands produce adrenaline and cortisol, which are released into the blood stream, speaking up heart and breathing rates and increasing blood pressure and metabolism. These are all important (and advantageous) physical changes, allowing us to react quickly and effectively under pressure. However, even low levels of stress can be detrimental if they persist for too long; the nervous system will continue to be slightly activated and pump out extra stress hormones – leaving a person feeling depleted or overwhelmed, and weakening the body’s immune system.

“I’m frequently amazed by the unnecessary stressors clients create for themselves,” observes Francis J. Flynn, Psy.D., CAP, director of clinical services of the Brain Training Centers of Florida. “Often the single most controllable stressor is their calendar; they set unrealistically close or impossible-to-meet deadlines and, as those deadlines approach, their stress levels go through the roof.

“And, of course, there’s the ever-present cellphone or iPhone or Blackberry. We know that America has become addicted to these stressors when priests, ministers and rabbis must declare houses of worship ‘cellphone and text message free zones.’

“The world doesn’t come to an end when we turn off electronic devices on a plane; it won’t end if we turn them off for a couple of hours of personal down-time every day,” says Flynn.

Flynn also recommends “recognizing our own humanity, less than absolutely perfect is still pretty darn good. Always get a good night’s sleep; no matter what the problems of the day, you’ll be better able to handle them if you’re not sleep deprived. Read the great classic novels of American and world history; they take time, you have to flow down to appreciate them, and they will transport you to other times and places, giving you a different world view and allowing you to escape for brief periods of time from the stressors of your day-to-day life.”

At the Brain Training Centers of Florida, Brain Wave Optimization is being utilized everyday to assist men and women to understand the functioning of their brains and to train their brains to handle situations the way they want them to.

Francis J. (Skip) Flynn, Psy. D.

Posted in: Brain Wave Optimization, Stress

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Depressed? Anxious? Perhaps eating disordered or feeling overwhelmed by the struggles of being a primary caregiver?

Please read the “full disclosure” notice at the end of this report.

Depressed? Anxious? Perhaps eating disordered or feeling overwhelmed by the struggles of being a primary caregiver to a critically ill spouse or elderly parent– sometimes a form of post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Before you make that all-important call to schedule with a psychiatrist consider:

· “…[T]he percentage of visits to psychiatrists that included psychotherapy dropped from 44 percent in 1996-1997 to 28 percent in 2004-2005. And the percentage of psychiatrists who provide psychotherapy at every patient visit decreased from 19 percent to 11 percent. This decline in therapy was closely correlated with the growth of medication treatment and decreasing insurance reimbursements for psychotherapy.

· “Managed care companies discourage [psychiatrists] from doing psychotherapy, arguing that it is more cost effective for psychiatrists to do 15-minute medication visits every 3 months, and to hire a lower paid non-M.D. for more frequent therapy visits.

· “…Over the past two decades, psychiatry has gone astray. We have allowed our treatment decisions to be influenced by the promise of riches from drug companies, rather than by what our patients most need. We have fought pitched turn wars with our colleagues in related disciplines, instead of learning from them and incorporating their effective therapeutic tools into our arsenal. Finally, we have unquestioningly sought to become just as “medical” as other doctors, when we should embrace the fact that psychiatry is remarkably different from the rest of medicine.”

· “As psychiatrists have become enthralled with diagnosis and medication, we have given up the essence of our profession – understanding the mind. We have become obsessed with psychopharmacology and its endless process of tinkering with medications, adjusting dosages, and piling on more medications to treat the side effects of the drugs we started with. We have convinced ourselves that we have developed cures for mental illness…, when in fact we know so little about the underlying neurobiology of their causes that our treatments are often a series of trials and errors.”

· “Whether we are talking about depression, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder, the new drugs introduced over the past fifty years are no more effective than the original prototypes – such as Haldol for schizophrenia, lithium for bipolar, and nardil for depression. We are keep to prescribe the newest drugs, and patients assume that much progress has been made in psychopharmacology over the past several decades,but… this profess has been overblown…. Even our newer drugs’ supposed advantage – fewer side effects – is being called into question.

· Our diagnostic process is shallow and is based on an elaborate checklist of symptoms, leading us sometimes to over-diagnosis patients with disorders of questionable validity, or, conversely, to miss the underlying problems in our rush to come up with a discrete diagnostic label that will be reimbursed by the insurance company. We tend to treat all psychological problems the same way – with a pill and a few words of encouragement. Because of this rote approach to treatment, patients are often misdiagnosed and medications are overprescribed…We have been seduced by the constant encouragement from drug companies to prescribe more medications and an insurance reimbursement system that discourages therapy… Pulled by both drug companies and consumer demand to provide immediate drug fixes to life’s difficulties, the field of psychiatry has become unhinged, pried away from its original mission – to discover the causes of mental illness and to treat those causes, not merely the symptoms.

In Unhinged: The Trouble With Psychiatry – A Doctor’s Revelations About A Profession In Crisis (Free Press, 2010) Daniel Carlat, MD has produced a scathing indictment of the profession to which he has dedicated fifteen years “in a small town north of Boston.” A member of the faculty of the Tufts Medical School and a solo practitioner, Carlat trained at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. He is also the editor of The Carlat Psychiatry Report, a monthly newsletter for clinicians in the US.

By his own admission, Carlat experienced a series of epiphanies that caused him to begin questioning his role as a shill for Big Pharma, the validity of many of the “scientific research” and “medical” reports that provide the basis for psychiatrists prescribing practices, and the efficacy of the “15-minute medication session” that is the basis for much of what now passes as as psychiatric “treatment.”

Chapter by chapter, dissects the American Psychiatric Associations Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders – IV, the bible of psychiatric diagnosis – diagnosis by committee consensus without scientific basis and by checklist; the role of drug reps and so-called “experts” in the PR selling of new drugs to prescribing physicians; sham therapeutic treatments; and the innate weaknesses of contemporary psychiatry – including the loss of clinically proven counseling skills and an almost myopic focus on prescribing psychoactive medications that necessitates more and more prescriptions to offset side effects.

The bottom line is; An MD psychiatrist can earn two, three or four times as much by scheduling 15 minute medication prescribing/reviewing sessions than he can with a 45 or 50 minute hour of psychotherapy.

That’s one of the most critical points made by Daniel Carlat, MD in Unhinged: the Trouble With Psychiatry – A Doctor’s Revelations About A Profession In Crisis (Free Press, 2010).

At The Brain Training Centers of Florida we help people resolve these issues every day. We offer lasting relief without the use of medications. Our Brain Wave Optimization and Cognitive Behavioral approach is noninvasive and extremely quick acting. Please call our office at 305-412-5050 to schedule a consultation.

_____

In 1973, while studying for the Roman Catholic priesthood with the Maryknoll Fathers, I was arrested and held for eleven days as a political prisoner in Latin America. Upon my return to the US, I immediately requested and received counseling from Dr. Thomas Stauffer, an outstanding psychiatrist. To this day, I remain grateful for his assistance and empathic support. Despite the fact today I would be diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress disorder, I did not request and Dr. Stauffer did not prescribe psychoactive medications.

Nonetheless, as a result of my work with him, I greatly appreciate the role of the well-trained and highly competent psychiatrist. When appropriate, I refer clients for assessment and medication. I also encourage clients to work closely with their prescribing psychiatrists and, as quickly as possible and if possible, withdraw from medication – if that is consistent with their desires and their on-going progress.

Francis J. (Skip) Flynn, Psy. D.

Posted in: Anxiety, Brain Wave Optimization, Depression

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Anxiety, Tourettes, Sleep Issues, Addictions and Dizziness All Targeted In Today In Brain Training: June 21, 2010

Utilizing our brain wave optimization technology, we at the Brain Training Centers of Florida, are helping nine different people with their difficulties. Their difficulties include anxiety, panic attacks, tourettes, addictions and sleep issues. We are open 8Am to 10PM seven days a week to facility the daily need for brain wave optimization. By combining brain wave optimization with cognitive behavioral therapy, we have been very successful at helping people with the issues listed above.

Posted in: Anxiety, Brain Wave Optimization, Sleep Issues, Tourettes Syndrome

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