What to Expect?
Once you have been approved to begin MeRT℠, you will be scheduled to have an EEG to measure your brain wave patterns. This will take approximately 40-60 minutes depending on the patient. You will be seated in a chair and have an EEG cap placed on your head. A certified technician will gently insert gel via a plastic tip into each electrode on the cap. A computer will read your brain wave activity based on this connection.
Once all electrodes are connected, the technician will record your EEG. You will be asked to sit very still and close your eyes while the EEG is recording. We will assist you to help you stay still for approximately 10 minutes. If your child is receiving this EEG, we collect increments of data. According to your child’s ability (or lack thereof) to stay still and calm.
Once the EEG is completed, the results are sent to a specialty lab (Wave Neuroscience), and resulted within 1-2 business days. Our medical provider will interpret your EEG in an individual session and discuss potential outcomes based on your results.
Our team will schedule you for the actual treatment to be received 5 days per week. Each treatment session is approximately 30-35 minutes depending on your treatment protocol. Your protocol is customized according to the lab’s interpretation of your EEG along with your individual motor threshold. This means that you will have a customized location of stimulation and a customized stimulation intensity to fit your brain’s needs. This allows for more efficacy in your treatment and less side effects (especially when compared to the traditional rTMS).
The stimulation itself trains your brain to learn these awake, relaxed brain waves (also known as alpha waves). To solidify your brain’s “learning” of these waves, you will be asked to close your eyes during each stimulation burst (5 second increments). (If you have a child receiving treatment, we provide gentle assistance in this process if needed.) You will have around 30 seconds in between each stimulation burst. So it looks something like this: 5 Second Stimulation (eyes closed), 30 seconds rest (eyes open), 5 second stimulation (eyes closed), 30 seconds rest (eyes open), and repeat until session is completed after 30-35 minutes.
A technician will be accompanying you to assist in any way in this process.
Consistency will be important for your treatment since it is a retraining of your brain waves, similar to a physical work-out. Just like we see with endurance training or muscle building, there must be consistent days on and days off to truly see results. In the case of MeRT℠, treatment Monday through Friday with weekends off helps provide results faster.
Every two weeks, we will collect a repeat EEG to monitor your progress. You will discuss these results with your provider once they are resulted. We will also measure your progress via psychological assessments each week.
We recommend at least 6 weeks of MeRT℠, depending on your condition. Some patients receive up to 12 weeks. This treatment is designed to be a one-time treatment. Longevity of results vary depending on lifestyle, medications, sobriety, and other environmental factors. We tend to see lasting results when patients are consistent with their individual therapy, medication routine, healthy sleep routine, and have a general healthy lifestyle. You may discuss this with your provider in further detail for your own best results.