Practitioners who receive our quarterly Mindful Learners Newsletter have the opportunity to submit their questions for Mitchell and Angelika Sadar to answer. To join the mailing list, sign up here.
Question: For peak alpha frequency, what if anything can/should be done when clients have slowed or too fast of a PAF?
Response from Dr. Mitchell Sadar:
Adults are expected to have a PAF (peak alpha frequency) between 9 and 11 Hz. In general, a slow PAF suggests under arousal and a fast PAF suggests over arousal. If the PAF finding correlates with your arousal assessment and the rest of your clinical and EEG data, you would select protocols to increase or decrease arousal depending on your overall arousal finding.
More specifically, you could try protocols aimed at inhibiting the slow or fast alpha frequency while rewarding a faster alpha for a slow PAF, or a slower alpha for a fast PAF. For example, if a client’s PAF was 8.5 Hz, you would inhibit 7-9 Hz while rewarding 9.5-12.5 Hz. The referential sensor would be at Pz, as this site best relates to the region where alpha is generated. You could also try a sequential montage (P3-P4) as some clients might be more responsive to a sequential montage. Training could be done with eyes open and closed to try to maximize the effect on the alpha production.