Biofeedback Tools for Stress

Stress is inevitable, however, using biofeedback tools makes suffering optional. Just like a thermometer informs us of our body temperature, biofeedback can be used to measure different physiological symptoms of stress. Biofeedback is painless and non-intrusive.

Heart Rate Variability (HRV) training reflects the quality of a heart rhythm. Phone apps and YouTube tutorials are readily available for learning diaphragmatic breathing skills. Then measure changes in heart rhythm by taking your pulse or using phone apps, using wrist worn devices or HRV training devices found online.

Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) measures the amount of sweat secretion from the skin. The most widely known form of GSR is the lie detector test, however there are inexpensive, yet sophisticated, handheld GSR units available online.

Electromyography (EMG) measures muscle tension. EMG has also been used for stress management by attaching leads to the forehead, jaws or head, to teach muscle relaxation in general, or for reducing stress-related headaches.

Electroencephalography (EEG) biofeedback, known as neurofeedback, is a process of teaching the brain to reduce inefficient functioning. MRI studies using specific neurofeedback protocols have shown that the brain can learn to relax from patterns associated with the fight/flight/freeze stress response.

Tina Buck, Ph.D., LPC, is CEO of Biobalance Integrated Wellness, in Tucson. Connect at 520-227-3695 and See ad, page 8. 

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