What is neurofeedback?
A specific type of biofeedback. Biofeedback is feedback of certain biological functions. Strictly speaking, a thermometer is a type of biofeedback. Also, a pulse measurement. Or an ECG (electrocardiogram). Neurofeedback is a feedback of the brainwaves.
Brain Hero uses a mobile EEG, so a brainwave meter on your head (1). This measures brain signals and transmits them to a tablet via Bluetooth (2). There, the brain waves are graphically displayed and through that the player receives feedback (3) of their own brain signals.
The goal of Neurofeedback is to improve certain brain signals.
What do you need to play Brain Hero?
Our self-developed EEG, a tablet or smartphone and a stable internet connection.
What is the difference to other providers such as Muse?
Here are several differences:
- We train concentration and relaxation
- We specifically train the points that are relevant for children with autism
- The game is designed for children with autism
Can someone else play with it, or does it not work?
Of course, someone else can play with it, but the user must log in to a guest account. Consider that different neurological impairments use different points. Someone on the autism spectrum will play with other brain points than someone with Alzheimer’s, depression, etc.
Scientific Basis of Brain Hero
We looked at many studies to design Brain Hero. In the end, we started Brain Hero on the basis of six studies involving 101 children with autism with measurable impact using questionnaires and specialized EEG evaluation methods. Details of the studies can be found here:
- Positive effects of neurofeedback on autism symptoms correlate with brain activation during imitation and observation, 2018 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28245068)
- A Neurovisceral Approach to Autism: Targeting Self-Regulation and Core Symptoms Using Neurofeedback and Biofeedback, 2018 (https://www.researchgate.net/publication/324130912_A_Neurovisceral_Approach_to_Autism_Targeting_Self-Regulation_and_Core_Symptoms_Using_Neurofeedback_and_Biofeedback )
- Facilitating Neurofeedback in Children with Autism and Intellectual Impairments Using TAGteach, 2018 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29380270)
- An Effective Neurofeedback Intervention to Improve Social Interactions in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, 2015 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26210513)
- Neurofeedback training produces normalization in behavioral and electrophysiological measures of high-functioning autism, 2014 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24778378)
- Efficacy of Neurofeedback for Children in the Autistic Spectrum: A Pilot Study, 2002 (https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Efficacy-of-Neurofeedback-for-Children-in-the-A-Jarusiewicz/c72bcdaa13516d418d76d8a53d9d95d876db6550)
Are there tips from alpha users?
- Establish a daily routine for Brain Hero (e.g. after showering, before dinner)
- Use if possible, always at the same place and surrounding
- Agree on rewards (e.g. if the child plays three rounds today, the child gets 3 min of YouTube time for each round)
- Play at least 3x / week
- Take a break during vacation
How did the idea come about?
The idea came from a personal concern. After the daughter of the MyMind GmbH founders got the autism-diagnosis, her therapist advised the family to try neurofeedback to complement the therapy. As the parents were not satisfied with the available offer, they took matters into their own hands.
Brain Hero just completed the alpha test, what does that mean?
This means that we have tested the first prototype of Brain Hero with few people over a long period. We have 2 users who have been playing for over a year and there are more children playing since the beginning of 2019.
What is a beta test?
A beta is a pre-release version and serves to further expand and test the product. In the case of Brain Hero, we plan to improve the game as part of the beta testing to keep the kids motivated.
Who owns Brain Hero?
Brain Hero is a product of the company MyMind, which was founded by Christof Götz and Christine Hartlieb-Götz.
How can I make my own saline solution (salt water) at home?
To make your own saline solution, you can mix 9 grams of salt with 1 litre water. If you want to make less, take correspondingly less salt e.g. 4,5 grams of salt with half a litre.
Where can I buy saline solution (salt water)?
Saline solution can be bought in your conventional pharmacy.
How does Brain Hero work?
To illustrate how Brain Hero works, we created a video, which you can find here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NF2e-Et6dzg&feature=youtu.be
What can I do if I do not own a tablet?
If you do not own a tablet, the training can be done via smartphone or you could contact your insurance company and apply for a tablet as an aid to therapy.
Can I play with my child’s account?
Only the child should play on his/her account, as the score of another person would interfere with the already existing scores, which you can see in the profile. If you still want to try out Brain Hero or show your child how it works, you can use the guest account.
For whom is Brain Hero suitable?
Brain Hero is planned as a therapy exclusively for people with autism within the age group 6 to 18.
Which Number can I call, if I have problems concerning the EEG or the app, that are not listed in the FAQs?
If you have further question, you can call us here: +43 19974294
What do I have to consider before my child uses Brain Hero the first time?
Before your child starts playing, you should watch all introduction videos on our website to be fully prepared. Furthermore, you should put on the EEG yourself to show your child how it works and how it feels. Afterwards you put salt water on the electrodes and then play Brain Hero next to your child. You could also think of small rewards to give your child after a successful training session.
How much do the EEG and the app cost?
The Beta-Test-Program costs € 149, – in the test for the first two months. If for any reason the training is not suitable for your child, you can return the device and get your money back in full after these initial two months. If regular training has taken place during the first two months, we will compare the measured changes and your observations together with you and you can continue training as long as you like for € 99,- per month. Thereby you will receive an ongoing progress report and, of course, our constantly evolving training programs.
QUESTIONS CONCERNING THE EEG
The contact points on the EEG are not turning green, what can I do?
When the contact points stay red, it means that you probably did not use enough salt water on the electrodes. To improve the contact, put some more on the ears and under the electrode on the head. The contact points should turn green now.
I cannot establish a connection to the EEG, what can I do?
If you cannot establish a connection to the EEG it is probably because of the following reasons:
- Bluetooth is not turned on
- You have trouble with the internet connection
- The EEG is not charged
How can I connect the EEG to the app?
You do not have to turn on the EEG, as it automatically knows, when it is supposed to connect to the app. Once a connection is established, you should be able to see a blue light on the EEG, which means the devices are paired.
How can I charge the EEG?
On the back of the EEG you can find an USB-C port, where you can plug in a normal charger. It is recommended to use a wall socket, rather than a laptop outlet.
How do I put together the EEG?
To demonstrate the process as detailed as possible, we created a video, which you can find here: https://youtu.be/tII-RZPl7-M (German version)
Where can I see how much battery my EEG has left?
The battery indicator is located on the top right, after you connected the app with the EEG.
Can I play Brain Hero without the EEG?
No, to use Brain Hero, you must own our EEG.
How do I put on the EEG the right way?
While putting on the EEG, one electrode should point to the front and one to the right. The slightly narrower part of the EEG should now face the back. The easiest way to put on the EEG is to hold the front side of the elastic band against the forehead and then gently pull it back until the helmet sits comfortably. The EEG should now be in the centre of the head, so that it can measure the brain waves correctly. Finally, the ear clips must be attached to the ears and then everything should fit perfectly.
How long does it take for the EEG to be fully charged?
The EEG should be charged a minimum of 2 hours. You can also plug it in overnight, as it cannot be overloaded.
Does it hurt to set up the EEG?
The ear clips can be a bit uncomfortable at first. The electrode on the head can be irritating at the beginning, if you have to push it slightly more towards the scalp, if necessary, to make the initial contact. While the headband is designed to be comfortable, it may be that some children find it uncomfortable at first.
If the child does not accept caps or other headgear, this may mean that it must be slowly brought to wearing the EEG. For everyone else this is easy. We already had more than 300 people who played Brain Hero, there was never any trouble here.
Questions Concerning the app
I forgot my password, what can I do?
If you forgot your password, go back to the Login page and press the button “Forgot password?”. A new page will open, where you will have to enter your E-Mail address. After that, you can reset your password.
Why does the screen turn red during the calibration/ during the game?
The screen turns red when your child moves too much. Try to calm him/her down, then the screen should quickly return to the usual colours.
What can we do with the coins that we earned?
The earned coins can be spent on various mini games.
How can I motivate my child to play?
To motivate your child, you could give them rewards once they have finished a training session with Brain Hero. Rewards should depend on the hobbies and passions of your child. If they like watching YouTube videos for example, you could allow them to watch a certain amount of time after they finished a training session with Brain Hero.
Which tips can my child use to make the Brain Hero fly downwards?
To make the Brain Hero fly downwards, your child can try to think of certain routines, their favourite song or if possible, they can try to think about nothing.
Which tips can my child use to make the Brain Hero fly upwards?
To make the Brain Hero fly upwards, your child can try to solve difficult mathematical problems, translate sentences into a foreign language or reproduce contents they just learned in school.
How often should I use Brain Hero with my child?
The recommended number of training sessions per week should be 6 rounds, each of them consisting of 7 times flying upwards and 7 times flying downwards, which takes around 8-10 minutes. After two months a minimum of 6 hours of training should be accomplished.
Can I play Brain Hero on my laptop?
No, Brain Hero can exclusively be used on tablets and smartphones.