State-of-the-Art, Drug-Free Mental Health Therapy
Light and Sound Neurotherapy (LSN) is one of many cutting-edge treatment therapies that Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches' facilities offer. It’s a safe and completely drug-free approach, most commonly used in the treatment of trauma, involving a combination of light and sound to produce a favorable response from the brain. Numerous studies have also revealed the effectiveness of Light Sound Neurotherapy in the treatment of depression disorders. The process strengthens desired brainwave response patterns by taking advantage of the brain’s natural tendency toward pleasant rhythmic stimulation.
Extensively Researched, Conclusively Demonstrated
Before adopting Light Sound Neurotherapy into patients’ treatment plans, Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches' team of research professionals conducted their own clinical assessment of its validity and effectiveness. The study was administered to patients with co-occurring disorders, 11 of whom were given Light Sound Neurotherapy.
After a series of different stimulation exercises, Light Sound Neurotherapy recipients reported the following results:
- 9 out of 11 reported improved sleep quality and duration
- 6 out of 11 reported pleasant dissociative experiences during their sessions (e.g., sense of floating)
- 6 out of 11 reported increased focus and concentration following the sessions
- 6 out of 11 exhibited decreased anxiety symptoms
- 6 out of 11 exhibited increased patience and reported being less irritable with others following the sessions
- 5 out of 11 reported repressed memory recall during the session; 3 pleasant childhood memories, 2 involving childhood abuse
- 4 out of 11 reported decreased or the disappearance of pain following the sessions
- 2 out of 11 reported dramatic improvement or disappearance of facial tics as told to clients by peers
The study demonstrated overall favorable outcomes in the LSN group compared to the control group who received standard treatment. Administrators of the study also reported patients feeling a sense of calmness after their LSN sessions.
Which Patients Will Benefit from LSN?
The determination of patients’ eligibility for Light Sound Neurotherapy occurs during their initial intake and psychological assessment. The process is then administered after the detoxification phase of treatment as part of a specially designed recovery program. Usually trauma, depression and anxiety patients with co-morbid disorders are the best candidates for the therapy.
Several studies have found that Light and Sound Neurotherapy (LSN) is an effective treatment for depression.
LSN strengthens desired brainwave patterns by taking advantage of our brain’s natural tendency to synchronize with pleasant rhythmic stimulation.
Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches' Research Facility conducted its own study to evaluate the effectiveness of Light and Sound Neurotherapy (LSN) for clients who were diagnosed with co-morbid depression and participating in the Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches residential substance abuse treatment program.
The details from that study are below:
- 11 LSN and 7 control subjects
- LSN subjects were selected based on high MCMI Dysthymia (M=83.1) and/or MDD (M=78.2) scale scores in their intake assessment
- Control subjects’ Dysthymia and MDD scales scores were less severe averaging 72 and 67.1
- LSN subjects were not told the basis for their selection, only that the program was evaluating a new treatment procedure
- All subjects were administered the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Beck Hopelessness Scale (BHS), and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES) before and after the LSN intervention
- Due to a family emergency, one LSN subject was discharged without completing the post-treatment measures
Light and Sound Neurotherapy (LSN) Treatment Intervention:
LSN was administered in a group therapy format using the NeuroAdvantage™ Trainer five afternoons per week for 30 minutes each session for two weeks.
The Trainer stimulated the right hemisphere at 10hz and left hemisphere at 19hz designed to help correct hemispheric asymmetries commonly found in QEEG studies of depressed people. One LSN subject only listened to rhythmic sound stimulation due to a history of photo seizures.
Subjects listened to coaching CDs during their sessions. These CDs combined positive affirmations and guided visualizations with psycho education. The four CD titles were:
- Mindfulness Meditation
- Deep Relaxation
- Step 1: Acceptance of Powerlessness
As seen in figure 1, the control group receiving BHOPB’s standard treatment services made substantial improvement on each of the outcome measures decreasing their depression and hopelessness by an average of approximately 50% and improving their self-esteem scores by 25%.
These findings validate the significant improvement clients on average make during their participation in BHOPB’s program.
As shown in figure 2, the NeuroAdvantage group made even greater improvement on the outcome measures compared to the control group. While this was somewhat expected given the greater depressive symptoms and lower self-esteem initially endorsed by the treatment group, the differential magnitude of change was still very substantial. On average, the NeuroAdvantage group’s depression and hopelessness scores decreased by 75% while their self-esteem scores increased by 80%.
Figure 3 presents the percent of the NeuroAdvantage and control group subjects who "greatly improved" as defined by a 50% or more decrease in depression on the BDI and BHS and a 100% or more improvement in self-esteem on the RSES. The difference in "greatly improved" rates at the individual level between the NeuroAdvantage and control group subjects was very substantial for each measure. This finding suggests that by adding neurotherapy groups to its treatment services, BHOPB will significantly increase the likelihood that every client makes substantial improvement while participating in their program.
Figure 4 presents the NeuroAdvantage subjects’ rating on a five-point scale of the helpfulness of their neurotherapy group experience compared to other BHOPB treatments (0 = One of the Least Helpful; 2 = About Average; and 4 = One of the Most Helpful).
The therapist running the NeuroAdvantage treatment group kept a detailed log of subjects’ self-reports before and after the sessions. An analysis of subjects’ self-report data found:
- 9 of 11 improved sleep quality and duration
- 6 of 11 had pleasant dissociative experiences during their sessions (e.g., sense of floating)
- 6 of 11 increased focus and concentration following the sessions
- 6 of 11 decreased anxiety symptoms
- 6 of 11 increased patience and reported being less irritable with others following the sessions
- 5 of 11 reported repressed memory recall during the session; 3 pleasant childhood memories, 2 involving childhood abuse
- 4 of 11 reported decreased or the disappearance of pain following the sessions
- 2 of 11 reported dramatic improvement or disappearance of facial tics as told to clients by peers
The therapist also reported that clients consistently reported feeling a sense of inner calmness and serenity following their NeuroAdvantage sessions.