Date of Conferral
Decreases in overall well-being and daily functioning result from unpleasant and uncomfortable symptoms associated with physical health and mental health disorders. Neurofeedback training, rooted in the theory of operant conditioning, presents the possibility of increasing brain wave regulation, decreasing symptoms experienced from abnormal brain wave activity, and increasing overall well-being and daily functioning. The efficacy of neurofeedback for physical and mental health outcomes is unclear, contributing to confusion about the treatment and any potential benefits. In order to assess the efficacy of neurofeedback in the alleviation of physical health and mental health symptoms, a systematic review and meta-analysis of neurofeedback using a random effects model to generate the effect sizes was conducted on 21 studies with 22 comparisons that used neurofeedback to treat patients. The results showed that neurofeedback can be effective for physical and mental health outcomes, including for autism with an effect size of 0.29, tinnitus with an effect size of 0.77, schizophrenia with an effect size of 0.76, depression with an effect size of 0.28, insomnia with an effect size of 0.52, obesity with an effect size of 0.40, intellectual disability with an effect size of 0.73, and pain with an effect size of 0.30. Well-being and daily functioning for those with physical and mental health disorders can be improved. These findings have implications for clinical practice to help patients in treatment for physical and mental health problems, and also for social change by providing evidence for alternative health care options.