EDITORIAL AMENDMENT: at 4:28, Meghan refer’s to Dr. Michelle Presniak as a Brain Expert. While Dr. Presniak has a high degree of experience in this area, regulatory considerations in Ontario prohibit the use of the term expert. We apologize for any confusion this may have created.
As many of you know, one of the key things that I focused on in my own clinical practice was the health of entrepreneurs and go-getters. In addressing their health, we first worked on restoring pre-existing issues; next, we focused on health optimization; then, we ultimately focused on optimizing the functionality of one’s brain. And while we had a tremendous assortment of tools at our disposal in order to make that happen, my guest today is discussing one that I had ZERO exposure to in my own practice!
Dr. Michelle Presniak is a Clinical Psychologist. Her particular focus is around the utilization of neurofeedback to help individuals move to their next level with respect to their brain health. She works with individuals who are managing depression and anxiety, as well as those who are looking to optimize their brain health by providing them with the feedback that they need to begin moving the neuroplasticity of their brain to get them to that next level.
Now, if this sounds like something you really have no clue about… then that makes you and me both! This interview answered so many questions for me regarding what neurofeedback is able to provide and how it can help in so many unique scenarios. I learned about how we can move the needle on brain health, anxiety and depression, and more.
Whether you are looking to manage a situation or simply optimize the health of your own brain, I promise you, this conversation is going to be a compelling one for you!
[1:55] About today’s episode with Dr. Michelle Presniak!
[3:55] Welcoming Dr. Presniak to the podcast!
[4:37] Michelle shares about her background as a Clinical Psychologist and why she has focused so heavily on brain health optimization and neurofeedback.
[8:40] What is neurofeedback? How does it work? And what does the process of obtaining neurofeedback from clients look like?
[12:38] When Dr. Presniak is using neurofeedback and working with patients who have experienced trauma, are they trying to build our new neural pathways, or are they trying to disconnect some of the associations they had with their trauma? Or is it something else entirely?
[14:11] How neurofeedback actually works from a physiological and anatomical level to facilitate changes within a patient’s brain.
[16:02] When Dr. Presniak is working with a client and has the opportunity to do neurofeedback, is she looking at a situation where she would be able to accelerate what could happen with talk therapy alone (i.e. they are working in conjunction with each other)? Or, is the neurofeedback used as a completely independent modality?
[18:00] For those with anxiety or depression, what can one expect in terms of a timeline of change? Or, is it a kind of treatment or support that one can expect to be engaged with indefinitely or for a long period of time?
[21:09] If children are given neurofeedback early in life, are they able to adapt much quicker than adults? What does this impact look like? How does it differ from the results they see with adults?
[22:25] Michelle shares her own journey and experience with neurofeedback and how it has helped her.
[24:24] In regard to this notion of increasing performance through neurofeedback, is it a matter of having more awareness and changing your behavior in response to your brain’s overactivity? Or, is it because you’ve increased the capacity of the brain in some way?
[26:21] How neurofeedback gives us more awareness around the subconscious learning our brains do.
[27:40] What happens for those who have a nondescript experience such as brain fog? Is it something people have reported changes on?
[30:07] Michelle explains how everything is connected to the brain and further addresses the causes behind brain fog.
[32:24] Michelle speaks about a common profile she often sees among women: the burnt-out brain profile.
[33:45] Your brain’s influence on sleep.
[35:49] Has Dr. Presniak seen an influence on chronic pain through neurofeedback?
[39:12] Michelle speaks about the initial assessment process when a client begins neurofeedback and the client’s overall experience getting neurofeedback.
[40:44] Discussing the profound impact that neurofeedback has on people.
[43:40] About Fullscript, your solution for connecting with patients and dispensing supplements, all from one platform!
[44:57] Michelle’s key performance indicators!
[47:18] Where to learn more about what Michelle is up to!
Mentioned in This Episode:
More About Michelle Presniak
Dr. Presniak is a Clinical Psychologist, Neurofeedback & Brain Expert, as well as a Child and Adult specialist. She graduated with a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2009 and over the course of her career has become an expert in the brain, self-regulation, child development, trauma, business, and entrepreneurship, as well as work health and functioning. In addition to her full-time clinical practice, Dr. Presniak is dedicated to teaching others the secrets to mental health, brain optimization, career success, and life fulfillment. She opens and runs neurofeedback clinics across Ottawa and Toronto.
Dr. Presniak has had the privilege of learning through her own experiences as a mother, wife, psychologist, and business owner, as well as learning through the experiences of those sharing their stories with her. You can find her on Instagram @drpresniak and @toronto_neurofeedback.
Dr. Presniak believes we all can reach our greatest potential, but to do so requires empowering our brain, optimizing our mental health, and knowing where and how to focus and balance our lives.
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“What’s… so intriguing about this [neurofeedback] process to most people is that their brain learns.” — Michelle Presniak
“We can definitely help forge new connections with clinical neurofeedback but we also can change pathways or connections.” — Michelle Presniak
“The beautiful thing about neurofeedback is that based on the research done so far is that effects tend to stick. There’s evidence that there’s long-term change. … We don’t get clients coming back once they’re done with their treatment.” — Michelle Presniak
“I’ve done neurofeedback myself. I’ve seen the changes that happen with it. … From my own experience, my brain and my body are healthier. I just have an awareness of my brain and my EEG that I never knew existed before.” — Michelle Presniak
“Without a doubt, everything is connected to the brain.” — Michelle Presniak
“The brain functions really well for a long time. But at some point, sometimes it just burns out. And that’s not just a feeling; that’s not just, ‘Oh, I’m feeling burnt out.’ I’ve actually been able to see what that looks like in the brain.” — Michelle Presniak
“Just the [neurofeedback] assessment itself has been so validating for so many clients I’ve seen over the years.” — Michelle Presniak