Alpha Control and Its Mediating Effects on Pain and Anxiety
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA
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The purpose of the experiment was to examine the mediating effects of alpha brainwaves on pain and anxiety. Three groups of five subjects each received biofeedback training with either alpha brainwaves alpha group, the pre-recorded brainwaves of the alpha group yoked group, or beta brainwaves beta group. All subjects believed they were receiving alpha training. Their subjective evaluation of the intensity of cuff-induced pain was recorded along with the amount of alpha generated, pulse rate and blood pressure. The alpha and yoked alpha brainwaves randomly and intermittently reinforced groups showed to significant difference in enhancement of alpha over baseline measurements or in the reduction of blood pressure and pulse rate physiological indicators of anxiety, however, both groups performed significantly better than the beta group. Regardless of initial group assignment, high alpha producers generally showed a greater tolerance to ischemic pain than low alpha producers.