Saturday, May 9, 2015

Brain Mapping and Brain Training, Session One

Last Saturday Tommy had his brain mapped.  Here he is getting comfy before they strap on the cap to read his brain:
I was worried because his tics were really bad that day and sure enough, as soon as they put the cap on he started having tics:

Things settled down and they were able to get a good reading.  He spent about 20 minutes with his eyes open and then another 20 minutes with his eyes closed.  When they read the data they take out all of the tics and eye blinks and other movements so that they have straight brain wave data.  He also had to take a test on the computer.
They read the data and mapped his brain and we went back yesterday for his first brain training session.  It turns out that the part of his brain that needs help is along the frontal lobe and on the left side of his brain.  They got the electrodes hooked up to his head:

There were 4 electrodes plus one on each ear.  He played a series of games and the technician led him through them, I think there were 6 or 7 in all.   There was a boat game and a series of Carnival Midway games:

When he did what he was supposed to, the blocks would get knocked over, or the balloons would pop, or the clown's face would fall off.  It was pretty interesting to watch.  After about 45 minutes we were finished.  His next sessions are Wednesday and Friday and we'll go twice a week for the next 10 weeks or so
On the way home he was tired and cranky and his tics were bad.  He didn't have them while he was playing the game but would have them in between.  The cranky/tiredness was from using a part of his brain that he doesn't use a lot, it was basically a work out for him.
We are also keeping a journal of his tics over the course of this treatment to see if and when they diminish.  Once they start to go away we can start weaning him off the medicine.
Fingers crossed that this works!

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