[TB1j] Re: Is flashing light/photic stimulation with sonic stim. to change brain waves a legit therapy???

et_al at my-deja.com et_al at my-deja.com
Sun Apr 15 23:26:18 EST 2001

On Sat, 14 Apr 2001 09:26:12 GMT, anxiety man
<saouglubsjb at hotmail.com> wrote:

>> However, while what you've described probably won't harm you, it is
>> not a proven treatment.
>Do you have proof that it doesn't work? I found a study on this type of
>therapy helping migraines and PMS. The flashing light is supposed to affect
>brain waves and the idea is to be able to train the mind to be able to go
>into a certain state at will. It is believed by those who study/practice this
>that it would also work on anxiety.
>Anyone who thinks it is impossible to train the mind to acheive certain brain
>wave states????
But do the brain wave states you train your brain to have any affect
on anxiety for more than a few minutes?  I don't believe you could
maintain a particular wave pattern for very long in normal day to
day activity no matter how long you practised.

>> Hypnosis, and I think that this is really
>> what this is, with the glasses etc being mostly for effect,  has not
>> proven to be a great treatment.
>Personally, I think it varies from person to person and the problem with
>hypnosis IMO is that a lot of people do not follow through with it fully.
>Hypnosis is meant to change the way someone thinks about things, just like
>> Very few have reported any long term
>> (more than a few weeks, if that) benefit
>I find that hard to believe, simply because I have a hypnosis tape that I
>bought and it definitely has a relaxing effect on me and even helps
>semi-"long term". I just haven't used it enough to benefit "long term" yet.
>For example, after being hypnotized (just suggestions to relax), I feel less
>anxious for hours. It is not a full reduction of symptoms but it's nice. I
>feel by doing it often I can experience being calm for days then weeks then
I've yet to hear of case where hypnosis affected a long term
reduction in anxiety. Do a search of past ASAP posts at Google, and
I doubt you will find one person having had a positive result from

There have been a number of international consensus panels reviewing
the effectiveness of various treatments for anxiety disorders. All
have found that only medication and CBT are effective. Some are
available on the web, do a search using 'consensus'  'panel'
'anxiety'  'ocd'  'panic' 'phobias'

>All that I am trying to say is that hypnosis and CBT are really not that
>different. In hypnosis, one trains the mind/body to relax and suggests that
>this is possible in the long run. CBT is similar in that one changes one's
>views on things via logic.
>Both of these have worked for me, but it is hard to sustain the relaxation
>for long.
Which rather proves what I said. If you look at the few long term
studies into the effectiveness of CBT, the results after 12 months
are about the same as in control groups that had no treatment. CBT
works well initially, but humans, being human tend to stop working
at it after a while and anxiety (and depression) returns.

>> You also may find that alt.support.anxiety-panic is a better forum
>> for anxiety disorder information.
>Yes I know... I posted this because I feared a Negative Reaction in the Brain
>(psychosis or something) from the flashing light itself. It doesn't seem
>likely but you watch this light for 15 minutes...  I figure now, however,
>that if 30 people(in a study) did this for migraine and none of them went
>psychotic, it is safe....
>Sorry to any people who find that I am in the wrong NG....
My point on this is, that neuro scientists don't necessarily know
much about psych disorders. These disorders are rarely due to a
neurological disorders as such, though small differences in
physiology have been found in patients with some anx disorders.

>My original question was if the flashing of a white light into the eyes(lids
>closed) would be able to cause adverse neurological/psychological probs... I
>think I answered my own question when I just stated that nobody in the
>literature on this has had a "breakdown" after receiving this treatment.

The only likely adverse effect of flashing lights is the triggering
of seizure in those that are susceptible - usually those with a
seizure history.

It is unlikely that it can produce  psychosis. Psychosis, and
psychological states generally, are not the result of faulty brain
wave patterns. 


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