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Norman Doidge ´ 2 Read

Describes natural non invasive avenues into the brain provided by the forms of energy around us light sound vibration movement which pass through our senses and our bodies to awaken the brain’s own healing capacities without producing unpleasant side effects Doidge explores cases where patients alleviated years of chronic pain or recovered from debilitating strokes or accidents; children on the autistic spectrum or with learning disorders normalizing; symptoms of multiple sclerosis Parkinson’s disease and cerebral palsy radically improved and other It's not that long ago that the idea of neuroplasticity was seen as fringe fantasy though it is now widely accepted though like climate change it has its scepticsIn his second book on the subject Doidge covers several techniues that are being used to change neural pathways to manage pain recover lost movement reduce symptoms of Parkinson's and other conditions One of his main messages is that the body and the mind brain can't be seen as separate the two work together in infinite feedback loops my image not his He wants to reach a wide audience which no doubt accounts for the great weight of case studies over theory If you want the theory you have to dig for it and follow through in the journal literature if you want For our book club the balance was pretty well right given our diverse backgrounds Between us we were familiar with the power of focused meditation visualisation mindful exercise music therapy and Feldenkrais awareness through movement techniues None of us knew of the tongue stimulation techniues used by one practice in the US which seems to have been very successful for those with the commitment to persist with exercises I learned from that chapter that neck injury can affect the brain; and that repeated injury can mean you lose what you recovered and have to start rehab again Doidge has helped me understand the dysfunctional loops of chronic pain following neck injury I've had multiples and I've begun to combine several of the techniues he discusses to help me manage muscle cramps pain and improve my sleep I've been going to Feldenkrais classes for several years; know enough to be able to focus on specific muscle groups and work on them I now combine it with music Mozart is recommended and visualisation as I go to bed and for the last two weeks I've slept better than I have for a long time It's having other benefits as well as I get better at managing my brain activity HoorayThank you Norman Doidge and thank you book group for another fascinating discussion Diary of the Fall energy around us light sound vibration movement which pass through our senses and our bodies to awaken the brain’s own healing capacities without producing unpleasant side The Brides of Rollrock Island effects Doidge The Daughter of Time explores cases where patients alleviated years of chronic pain or recovered from debilitating strokes or accidents; children on the autistic spectrum or with learning disorders normalizing; symptoms of multiple sclerosis Parkinson’s disease and cerebral palsy radically improved and other It's not that long ago that the idea of neuroplasticity was seen as fringe fantasy though it is now widely accepted though like climate change it has its scepticsIn his second book on the subject Doidge covers several techniues that are being used to change neural pathways to manage pain recover lost movement reduce symptoms of Parkinson's and other conditions One of his main messages is that the body and the mind brain can't be seen as separate the two work together in infinite feedback loops my image not his He wants to reach a wide audience which no doubt accounts for the great weight of case studies over theory If you want the theory you have to dig for it and follow through in the journal literature if you want For our book club the balance was pretty well right given our diverse backgrounds Between us we were familiar with the power of focused meditation visualisation mindful The World of Rafael Salas exercise music therapy and Feldenkrais awareness through movement techniues None of us knew of the tongue stimulation techniues used by one practice in the US which seems to have been very successful for those with the commitment to persist with Camping Makes Me Happy exercises I learned from that chapter that neck injury can affect the brain; and that repeated injury can mean you lose what you recovered and have to start rehab again Doidge has helped me understand the dysfunctional loops of chronic pain following neck injury I've had multiples and I've begun to combine several of the techniues he discusses to help me manage muscle cramps pain and improve my sleep I've been going to Feldenkrais classes for several years; know Idols for Destruction enough to be able to focus on specific muscle groups and work on them I now combine it with music Mozart is recommended and visualisation as I go to bed and for the last two weeks I've slept better than I have for a long time It's having other benefits as well as I get better at managing my brain activity HoorayThank you Norman Doidge and thank you book group for another fascinating discussion

Characters ì PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free ´ Norman Doidge

The Brain's Way of Healing Remarkable Discoveries and Recoveries from the Frontiers of Neuroplasticity

Now a New York Times BestsellerThe bestselling author of  The Brain That Changes Itself presents astounding advances in the treatment of brain injury and illness In The Brain That Changes Itself Norman Doidge described the most important breakthrough in our understanding of the brain in four hundred years the discovery that the brain can change its own structure and function in response to mental experience what we call neuroplasticity His revolutionary new book shows for the first time how the amazing process of neuroplastic healing really works It To review this book I have to tell you about my grandmotherWhen I bought my house I was thirty years old and single with little apparent prospect of that changing not that I hadn't tried to get married but all the women I'd asked to marry me some of whom I even knew had refused However my grandmother my little Italian Nonna was living with my parents ten minutes walk away It was as the marketing men say a no brainer I asked her to move in with meMay I say that there is no cushy or comfortable life for a thirtysomething single male than having your Italian grandmother living with you Washing cooking cleaning dusting ironing sewing it was all done Just so you don't get too jealous of the tempting mouth watering delights that must have been served up to me each night I must say that the one area in which Nonna was not all Italian was cooking she was terrible Well maybe that's slightly too strong a word her risotto and lasagne were good but out of her two dish comfort zone things tended to get well slabby I still remember with a slight shudder the thick slices of deep fried polenta uivering like vulcanised yellow rubber that she served up at least once a week But in all other respects it was a wonderfully cushy life and it meant I really got to know my Nonna particularly as she had only recently moved to EnglandIt was a glorious interlude and one that lasted four years But then I got married I sprang the proposal on my wife so completely out of the blue that she didn't have time to dodge Nonna moved out Wife moved inNonna went back to my parents taking over many of the housekeeping duties there while always whatever the weather taking a daily constitutional through the parkThen she had a stroke A little one Some weakness in her left arm a limp soon recovered from and half an aspirin dailyIt didn't work The second stroke was a major one Hospital beeping machines then relief She would live It was the left side again but this time worse No movement in her left leg or arm face pulled down on that side at least being the left side there was no language loss But she couldn't walkOut of danger they moved Nonna from the general hospital to Finchley Memorial Hospital which was then devoted to recuperation and physiotherapy And the physios set about her exercise effort every day for five six weeksBy the end of that time there was a little improvement but not that much and we assembled to meet the doctor to hear what the plan was for her continuing treatmentThere wasn't one They'd done all they could The first six weeks after stroke were crucial after that window there wouldn't be any further improvement Nonna didn't speak English The doctor told us to tell Nonna she would never walk again As he got up to leave he told us to set about arranging moving her into a nursing home And that was itFor a year Nonna sat in the lounge in the nursing home watching television she didn't understand and I'd visit her each day and talk to her the despairing small talk of family and friends and weather that substituted for hope According to the doctors there wasn't anyI think it was anger the slowly nurtured anger at helplessness and fate and God that did it The doctors might not want to do anything but anything was better than this waiting room of death the staff were lovely and caring but that is what the place wasSo what if the doctors said they wouldn't do anything We would We found a physiotherapist who spoke Italian and paid for her to visit Nonna and work with her And you know there was something some small improvement Nonna began to be able to move her left hand and then her armAnd then the cavalry arrived in the small suashy shape of our first child Theo Nonna's great grandsonNonna loved Theo She brightened she cooed she came alive when we brought him to see her And when I held him dangling just out of reach as the physio worked on her standing and posture Nonna pushed herself up unthinking focused on him and not on what she could not do and she began she began to standNonna was going to be the first resident of the nursing home to walk out of there on her own two feet rather than being carried out in a boxI still remember her chuckling laugh as she reached out to chaff Theo's cheek standing and not even realising it and wishing we had started this so much earlierThen Nonna had a third stroke She was reduced to a pair of wandering eyes rolling without control in a shell of flesh without any movement at all She didn't walk out of the nursing home Six months later she went out in the boxI wish I'd read this book then before all this happened But it hadn't been written Back then the six weeks window was all there was The brain was a hard wired thinking machine break it and it stayed brokeThis is the mistake of metaphor We've learned to understand the body and the mind through our inventions clocks and hydraulics circuits and computers Mechanical fixed things But the brain is alive; it's not caught by these metaphors And what we see in this remarkable book is the dawning realisation among researchers and doctors that brain and body mind and effort are all intimately and directly connected Unlike an electronic circuit the brain can find new connections fresh ways of doing things particularly when reinforcing the new connections with physical learningIt's an insight that some people seem uncomfortable with A uite remarkable in all the wrong ways review by Jonathan Ree of The Brain's Way of Healing in The Guardian concludes thus The publicity tells us that The Brain’s Way of Healing will provide new hope for millions of unlucky sufferers Hope is a tricky commodity however and while some of us may find it heartening for others it could be another turn of the fatal screw The neuroplastic revolution is part of a contemporary stampede towards the moralisation of medicine patients are encouraged to blame themselves for their sufferings and to think that their chances of recovery depend not on random tricks of fate or the luck or good judgment of their doctors but on their own willpower and moral fibre Sick people need to be cared for but they also have a right to be left in peaceThis is the judgement that condemned Nonna after six weeks; this is the end of hope and the acceptance of the TV lounge; this is morally stupid and intellectually offensive Why should hope and effort be placed in opposition to care and medicine? Only in the judgement of the reviewer For myself I wish this book had been written then Maybe Nonna would still have left the nursing home in a box but the stay would have been a battle and not a defeatHope emerged last from Pandora's box After all else is gone hope remains

Free download The Brain's Way of Healing Remarkable Discoveries and Recoveries from the Frontiers of Neuroplasticity

Near miracle recoveries And we learn how to vastly reduce the risk of dementia with simple approaches anyone can use For centuries it was believed that the brain’s complexity prevented recovery from damage or disease The Brain’s Way of Healing shows that this very sophistication is the source of a uniue kind of healing As he did so lucidly in The Brain That Changes Itself Doidge uses stories to present cutting edge science with practical real world applications and principles that everyone can apply to improve their brain’s performance and healt The Brain’s Way of Healing is the seuel to Doidge’s earlier introduction to the science of neuroplasticity The Brain That Changes Itself While that book took a general look at the subject this book hones in on the specific ways that harnessing the brain’s ability to rewire itself can result in remarkable recoveries from stroke and other traumatic brain injury and halt or slow the progression of diseases like Parkinson’s and MS This is some of the most exciting science of the twenty first century and Doidge does an amazing job of making it accessible to the average reader without dumbing it down If you own a brain you need to read this book–Kate Scottfrom The Best Books We Read In September 2016


10 thoughts on “The Brain's Way of Healing Remarkable Discoveries and Recoveries from the Frontiers of Neuroplasticity

  1. says:

    This is the fascinating story of a Toronto neurologist psychiatrist who travels the world fawning over sorcerers and con artists Doidge front loads the book with his strongest cases of neuroplasticity to lure you in but each successive chapter retreats further from reason and evidence until you're learning about a wizard who can heal nearly any mental or physical ailment you can name by shining LED lights at you I think Doidge means well and I am down with bleeding edge science The trick is to carefully ualify each therapy and be crystal clear about the limits of what we know Instead Doidge spends considerable energy dressing up the most far fetched anecdotes to make them easier to swallow Sometimes he seems to be trying to convince himself as much as you There are a few significant red flags Doidge waxes on and on about acupuncture meridian points explaining that they haven't changed for thousands of years a textbook argument from antiuity I kept waiting for the paragraph ualifying that the weight of evidence shows that it doesn't matter where you stick acupuncture needles or even if you stick them It's nothing but a placebo Doidge either isn't familiar with the research or he's constructed one hell of a blindspot for himself I'm guessing the latter He also buries in the end notes his belief that autism and vaccines have a causal relationship From a doctor engaging in public education this is inexcusable Every warm word he has for woo woo makes him less credible in my mind which is a shame because he's a clear writer and his subjects have interesting stories both personal and scientific In the end I don't know uite what to make of this book It might inspire further reading but I can't take it seriously on its own merits


  2. says:

    To review this book I have to tell you about my grandmotherWhen I bought my house I was thirty years old and single with little apparent prospect of that changing not that I hadn't tried to get married but all the women I'd asked to marry me some of whom I even knew had refused However my grandmother my little Italian Nonna was living with my parents ten minutes walk away It was as the marketing men say a no brainer I asked her to move in with meMay I say that there is no cushy or comfortable life for a thirtysomething single male than having your Italian grandmother living with you Washing cooking cleaning dusting ironing sewing it was all done Just so you don't get too jealous of the tempting mouth watering delights that must have been served up to me each night I must say that the one area in which Nonna was not all Italian was cooking she was terrible Well maybe that's slightly too strong a word her risotto and lasagne were good but out of her two dish comfort zone things tended to get well slabby I still remember with a slight shudder the thick slices of deep fried polenta uivering like vulcanised yellow rubber that she served up at least once a week But in all other respects it was a wonderfully cushy life and it meant I really got to know my Nonna particularly as she had only recently moved to EnglandIt was a glorious interlude and one that lasted four years But then I got married I sprang the proposal on my wife so completely out of the blue that she didn't have time to dodge Nonna moved out Wife moved inNonna went back to my parents taking over many of the housekeeping duties there while always whatever the weather taking a daily constitutional through the parkThen she had a stroke A little one Some weakness in her left arm a limp soon recovered from and half an aspirin dailyIt didn't work The second stroke was a major one Hospital beeping machines then relief She would live It was the left side again but this time worse No movement in her left leg or arm face pulled down on that side at least being the left side there was no language loss But she couldn't walkOut of danger they moved Nonna from the general hospital to Finchley Memorial Hospital which was then devoted to recuperation and physiotherapy And the physios set about her exercise effort every day for five six weeksBy the end of that time there was a little improvement but not that much and we assembled to meet the doctor to hear what the plan was for her continuing treatmentThere wasn't one They'd done all they could The first six weeks after stroke were crucial after that window there wouldn't be any further improvement Nonna didn't speak English The doctor told us to tell Nonna she would never walk again As he got up to leave he told us to set about arranging moving her into a nursing home And that was itFor a year Nonna sat in the lounge in the nursing home watching television she didn't understand and I'd visit her each day and talk to her the despairing small talk of family and friends and weather that substituted for hope According to the doctors there wasn't anyI think it was anger the slowly nurtured anger at helplessness and fate and God that did it The doctors might not want to do anything but anything was better than this waiting room of death the staff were lovely and caring but that is what the place wasSo what if the doctors said they wouldn't do anything We would We found a physiotherapist who spoke Italian and paid for her to visit Nonna and work with her And you know there was something some small improvement Nonna began to be able to move her left hand and then her armAnd then the cavalry arrived in the small suashy shape of our first child Theo Nonna's great grandsonNonna loved Theo She brightened she cooed she came alive when we brought him to see her And when I held him dangling just out of reach as the physio worked on her standing and posture Nonna pushed herself up unthinking focused on him and not on what she could not do and she began she began to standNonna was going to be the first resident of the nursing home to walk out of there on her own two feet rather than being carried out in a boxI still remember her chuckling laugh as she reached out to chaff Theo's cheek standing and not even realising it and wishing we had started this so much earlierThen Nonna had a third stroke She was reduced to a pair of wandering eyes rolling without control in a shell of flesh without any movement at all She didn't walk out of the nursing home Six months later she went out in the boxI wish I'd read this book then before all this happened But it hadn't been written Back then the six weeks window was all there was The brain was a hard wired thinking machine break it and it stayed brokeThis is the mistake of metaphor We've learned to understand the body and the mind through our inventions clocks and hydraulics circuits and computers Mechanical fixed things But the brain is alive; it's not caught by these metaphors And what we see in this remarkable book is the dawning realisation among researchers and doctors that brain and body mind and effort are all intimately and directly connected Unlike an electronic circuit the brain can find new connections fresh ways of doing things particularly when reinforcing the new connections with physical learningIt's an insight that some people seem uncomfortable with A uite remarkable in all the wrong ways review by Jonathan Ree of The Brain's Way of Healing in The Guardian concludes thus The publicity tells us that The Brain’s Way of Healing will provide new hope for millions of unlucky sufferers Hope is a tricky commodity however and while some of us may find it heartening for others it could be another turn of the fatal screw The neuroplastic revolution is part of a contemporary stampede towards the moralisation of medicine patients are encouraged to blame themselves for their sufferings and to think that their chances of recovery depend not on random tricks of fate or the luck or good judgment of their doctors but on their own willpower and moral fibre Sick people need to be cared for but they also have a right to be left in peaceThis is the judgement that condemned Nonna after six weeks; this is the end of hope and the acceptance of the TV lounge; this is morally stupid and intellectually offensive Why should hope and effort be placed in opposition to care and medicine? Only in the judgement of the reviewer For myself I wish this book had been written then Maybe Nonna would still have left the nursing home in a box but the stay would have been a battle and not a defeatHope emerged last from Pandora's box After all else is gone hope remains


  3. says:

    The information Doidge provides on the brain's ability to heal itself and thereby the body is both fascinating and compelling This flies in the face of our current mainstream view of the damage from brain injuries and certain chronic illnesses being permanent with no hope of recovery Our brains are far resilient than science has so far understoodThat being said I have some problems with the overall structure and content The important nuggets of information often get lost within repetitive information and long winded stories Conseuently I'm not sure this book will go over well with readers looking for a science based read The book opens with a case study of a man with Parkinson's disease This is uite a lengthy section as we follow this one man throughout his life his disease his determination to heal himself his setbacks and his healing We're given a lot of personal information far than necessary for me This section has the feel of a memoir or biography so than a book on brain scienceThere is also a lengthy section on Moshe Feldenkrais While interesting this feels far like a history lesson We follow him from Nazi occupied Paris We learn about his work with Irene Joliot Curie the famous Madame Curie's daughter We learn about Feldenkrais's work while also learning about how the State of Israel was formed All of this feels like it belongs in a different book Finally while I appreciate Doidge's enthusiasm I'm troubled by the fact that each case cited here had near miraculous results Were there any patients who simply did not do well or even as well with the treatments discussed? I do think there is important information to gain here on the brain's healing ability making this book worth readingI was given a copy of this book by Penguin Group via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review


  4. says:

    From this book you learn of amazing new developments in neurology The brain is plastic What this means in simple terms is that we can do things to change it Plastic means mold able It was previously thought that the brain directed the body but now we learn that the body too changes the brain Neurons that before have been classified as dead and useless are not dead This has huge implications for treatment of stroke Parkinson's disease Alzheimer's chronic pain multiple sclerosis traumatic brain injuries osteoarthritis premature infants autism dyslexia ADD and ADHDYou follow specific people with the above health problems Each is detailed and specific Through these examples you lean of today’s cutting edge techniues These people have what seem to be incurable absolutely hopeless problems Any adult of some age will be made uncomfortable following these individuals regardless of the fact that their progress is utterly amazing It isn't hard to imagine that such could happen to yourself It is nice that the book focuses upon the most hopeful advances in our imminent future at the end of the book It leaves you hopeful rather than depressed Seriously it is important to read this book so you know of alternative methods that are being developed The methods are holistic Treatments shy away from medicines when possible It is interesting to see how ancient Eastern treatments are being woven into new treatments and are validated by testing The techniues are clearly described BUT one gets to a point where so much is thrown at you that you need to reread and absorb before you go on I found myself following the text and even if I understood I would ask myself how exactly is that possible? The results are so astounding you step back and have a hard time believing Even if it all makes sense The section at the end on music therapy and the electronic ear device became diffuse in my head Doctors’ names are clearly stated Also where they work More information is said to be available at the author's home page I plan on seeking further information The audiobook is wonderfully narrated by George Newbern Slowly and clearly Even the appendices are read They are also available as PDFs with the audiobook However it is hard in an audiobook to backtrack to a particular chapter Often it will be said as presented in chapter X Going back to that is not easy For this reason alone I recommend the paper book There are some absolutely wonderful things ahead to be further investigated If you run into any of the above problems do check out this book The next problem is finding someone who can help you That could be difficult This is cutting edge technology


  5. says:

    This book was disappointing than I think I can possibly convey The Brain That Changes Itself was one of my favourite books and I have recommended it to all my friends so I was very excited about reading the seuel In this book Norman Doidge basically does the same as the first book he gives examples of people with very serious illnesses who have had amazing cures However for this book he has abandoned the scientific and fully embraced the pseudoscientific I am certainly not an expert on anything to do with the human body but I started to get skeptical once he basically wrote that 'sunlight is good so lasers must be better' He thens proceeds to give a list of things that low level skin laser treatment can heal and it reads exactly like the worst pseudoscientific garbage Essentially he says it is a miracle cure for everything from depression to cancer I was still willing to give him the benefit of the doubt so I read as many medical papers on laser treatment as I could find and they all bore out my suspicions Laser treatment has little if any benefit over a placebo This then followed for every single example for the rest of the book with the worst example being the exercises that can improve eyesight From my research this has been debunked for decades and can be actually damaging to your eyes Using one miraculous cure as an example of how well a treatment works is certainly not a good scientific methodIn a word avoid


  6. says:

    It's not that long ago that the idea of neuroplasticity was seen as fringe fantasy though it is now widely accepted though like climate change it has its scepticsIn his second book on the subject Doidge covers several techniues that are being used to change neural pathways to manage pain recover lost movement reduce symptoms of Parkinson's and other conditions One of his main messages is that the body and the mind brain can't be seen as separate the two work together in infinite feedback loops my image not his He wants to reach a wide audience which no doubt accounts for the great weight of case studies over theory If you want the theory you have to dig for it and follow through in the journal literature if you want For our book club the balance was pretty well right given our diverse backgrounds Between us we were familiar with the power of focused meditation visualisation mindful exercise music therapy and Feldenkrais awareness through movement techniues None of us knew of the tongue stimulation techniues used by one practice in the US which seems to have been very successful for those with the commitment to persist with exercises I learned from that chapter that neck injury can affect the brain; and that repeated injury can mean you lose what you recovered and have to start rehab again Doidge has helped me understand the dysfunctional loops of chronic pain following neck injury I've had multiples and I've begun to combine several of the techniues he discusses to help me manage muscle cramps pain and improve my sleep I've been going to Feldenkrais classes for several years; know enough to be able to focus on specific muscle groups and work on them I now combine it with music Mozart is recommended and visualisation as I go to bed and for the last two weeks I've slept better than I have for a long time It's having other benefits as well as I get better at managing my brain activity HoorayThank you Norman Doidge and thank you book group for another fascinating discussion


  7. says:

    The Plastic BrainWhen I expressed interest in understanding about the neurobiology of mental health a psychologist friend recommended The Brain That Changes Itself Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science When I looked up that book I found this recent book by the same author so started with this firstDid you know scientists didn't fully appreciate the plasticity of the brain until 2000? That wasn't so long ago and we are on a steep learning curve to understand how the brain can grow and change like any other organI didn't have a chance to read the entire book but the chapters I did read were fascinatingIn Physician Hurt Then Heal Thyself physician Michael Moskowitz suffered from debilitating chronic pain If you've ever had chronic pain you know how hopeless and irritable you feel But instead of resting and bemoaning his pain he found a way to stop it He learned about the brain areas that light up when damaged neurons send false alarms as with chronic pain Knowing neurons that fire together wire together with chronic pain the cells in the pain system begin to fire easily and the pain maps enlarge their receptive field due to the damaged neurons The often Moskowitz felt twinges of neck pain the easily his brain's neurons recognized it and the intense it got The name for this process is wind up pain because the the receptors in the pain system fire the sensitive they becomeMoskowitz also knew that neurons that fire apart wire apart Could he start to weaken links that had formed in his pain maps? What if when he was in pain he could try to override the natural tendency to retreat lie down rest stop thinking and nurse himself? The brain needed a counter stimulationHe decided to rewire his brain by visualizing the involved brain areas shrinking every time he felt pain By six weeks his pain was severely diminished and by one year it was gone KewlA Man Walks Off His Parkinsonian Symptoms demonstrates the magical effects of exercise on the brain John Pepper is a South African man who reversed Parkinson's Disease through walking There are also chapters on treating ADHD with music blindness with eye exercises and multiple sclerosis with a device that stimulates the tongue and therefore the brainThe writing style is engaging uite an interesting read


  8. says:

    The Brain’s Way of Healing is the seuel to Doidge’s earlier introduction to the science of neuroplasticity The Brain That Changes Itself While that book took a general look at the subject this book hones in on the specific ways that harnessing the brain’s ability to rewire itself can result in remarkable recoveries from stroke and other traumatic brain injury and halt or slow the progression of diseases like Parkinson’s and MS This is some of the most exciting science of the twenty first century and Doidge does an amazing job of making it accessible to the average reader without dumbing it down If you own a brain you need to read this book–Kate Scottfrom The Best Books We Read In September 2016


  9. says:

    Anecdotal and ignorant of scientific method I found it hard to credit anything Doidge wrote after his random prattling about the action of laser light inside cells This is not Oliver Sacks style here is an interesting case and this is what it might tell us about how things might work or here are some new developments being trialled it is a string of Bob had a brain problem by application of X he got better type stories where X varies from exercise to mindfulness to lasersuackery for those desperate to believe in miracle cures Sad because the area of brain plasticity is very interesting while cherry picked anecdotes in isolation are not


  10. says:

    A while ago I read and reviewed this author´s first book “The brain that changes itself” and found it fascinating I deem the present book to be even soFirst we learn of the case of the psychiatristpain specialist Michael Moskowitz who after a horrific accident had chronic pain for 13 years He got rid of the pain by visualizing that the areas of his brain producing it are shrinking after discovering that two brain areas process both visual information and pain The assumption is that these areas cannot process pain and visualize at the same time He teaches his patients to use the same method to dissolve their chronic painIn fact though I do not see that these cases prove anything since it is known that all visualization can work even visualization that has nothing to do with pain It would have been interesting if the author could also have explained to us how visualization in general worksOther scientists have found that patients can “shrink” their body image to rewire their brains When patients with chronic hand pain looked through binoculars at their hands and thus magnified them pain was increased; when they looked through the wrong end of the binoculars so their hands looked smaller pain decreasedA Parkinson´s patient John Pepper learnt how to reverse his major symptoms and walk normally by a system he devised to exercise conscious control over his walking He formed a Parkinson´s support group and taught hundreds of other such patients to drop their shuffling gait and move freely and effectively After mastering walking he began to take conscious control over his tremorA chapter on rewiring the brain with light tells us how sunlight heals babies with jaundice Florence Nightingale exposed her patients to as much sun as possible and thereby ensured their healingFred Kahn was healed of a rotator cuff injury by laser treatment as I myself was and began using low intensity laser treatments to heal horrific wounds diabetic ulcers burns psoriasis black gangrenous limbs etc etc ; also rheumatoid arthritis fibromyalgia some psychiatric disorders nerve injuries and traumatic brain injuries TBI can be healed in this wayWe are told how LED lights in the red and infrared range which have laser like properties were used on eight areas of the head of a woman with disabling TBI symptoms She couldn´t concentrate or sleep became easily exhausted couldn´t complete tasks and had lost her ability to speak two foreign languages After her first treatment she slept 18 hours and began improving significantlyA Boston group has found laser treatment helpful in TBI “Laser acupuncture” was used by placing light on acupuncture points Lasers harmlessly and painlessly pass light energy into meridians In China lasers are used to treat paralysis in stroke patients resulting in significant improvementsThe case of Gabrielle is described; following removal of a life threatening brain tumour she had trouble swallowing and eating was constantly nauseous had balance problems and difficulty walking People could hardly hear her speak; she used the wrong words like “fork” instead of “knife” and couldn´t multi task; she had lost her short term memory couldn´t recognize objects and could see only what was directly in front of her; she was hypersensitive to all sounds which seemed unbearably loud; she was chronically exhaustedFred Kahn rewired Gabrielle´s brain with light by means of his laser treatments and she was healedLasers were used successfully by Kahn and others to heal other brain problems together with cardiovascular problemsLight therapy is also being used to improve damaged connections between neurons in Alzheimer´sThere is a great chapter on the work of Moshe Feldenkrais with healing serious brain problems through mental awareness of movementThese various healers came to their discoveries through working on and mastering their own severe health problemsA baby girl missing part of her brain a third of her cerebellum who could neither sit up nor crawl and whose parents were told the best they could hope for was “profound retardation” was healed by Feldenkrais´s special techniues He pronounced that the girl would dance at her wedding She now has two graduate degrees from major universities is a voracious reader and did indeed dance at her weddingThere´s a chapter entitled “A Blind Man Learns to See” about a man called Webber who lost his sight owing to uveitis an autoimmune disease He was healed by doing exercises recommended by Feldenkrais which were similar to four ancient Buddhist exercises and also to Bates´ techniuesWebber needed help from Feldenkrais to be cured but the four basic techniues which helped were as follows1 Meditate on the colour blue black for a few hours a day2 Move the eyes up down left and right and around in circles as well as on diagonals3 Blink freuently4 Sun your eyes Sit with eyes closed in the morning or late afternoon and let the warmth and light of the sun penetrate through the eye tissues ten to twenty minutes a dayDeep relaxation of the eyes is essentialWe learn about an amazing device called the PoNS that healed a singer called Ron who could no longer sing because of MS had trouble swallowing and suffered from unrelenting exhaustion PoNS stands for Portable Neuromodulation Stimulator You put the device in your mouth where it painlessly stimulates the tongue and its sensory receptors “with waves of gentle signals” After thirty years of steadily worsening symptoms Ron´s improvement was rapid and vast All his MS symptoms improvedThere are 48 different kinds of sensory receptors on the tongue and these receptors pass electrical signals to nerve fibres then on to the brainThe PoNS device sits on the front two thirds of the tongue After 400 600 milliseconds brain waves are stabilized and all parts of the brain start to react firing together The tongue stimulation activates the whole brain While using the device the patient at the same time does an appropriate exercise A person with difficulty walking should try to walk then run on a treadmill when using the PoNS The device resets the brainWe are provided with case histories of persons with both Parkinson´s and MS who were healed by the PoNS together with persons severely brain injured in car accidentsWe hear about Tomatis´s Electronic Ear which helped struggling singers who were not hearing high freuencies well Once they could hear properly they could sing properly Tomatis trained the brain by stimulating the ear We are given the case history of a boy born prematurely who had severe developmental problems and who was heled by using the Electronic Ear This listening therapy is also effective against autismIt is said that the core feature of autism is an inability “to empathize and apprehend the existence of other minds” This is not true however A precise explanation is as follows “Battered by sound these children remain in fight or flight and cannot turn on the social engagement system”This is not only an amazing enlightening book informing us of many not generally known ways of healing all sorts of severe brain problems but the author writes in an engaging manner including many personal details and descriptions of the various therapists and their healed clients so we feel we know them personallyThough this is obviously a scientific book comprising innumerable technical details I found it to be easy to read I would say that it is the most informative useful and enlightening book I have read for at least a decade and I have read many such books I would wish that all those with brain injuries and problems could have access to one or of the exciting treatments mentioned


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