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Sapos y Princesas is, from 2005, a reference website for parents which  want to fill the childhood of their children of unforgettable moments.

On January 18, they published in “Sapos y Princesas” an informative article focused on attention problems in children.

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NeuroVitalia is part of Ataman Science S.L., an enterprise located in Tenerife specialized in space observation, collaborating among others, with the European Space Agency (ESA).

A few days ago, the Ataman Science’s team participated  in the search of fragments from a rocket just a few hours after its rupture.

Here is the interview that EFE made after the event. We hope you like it!

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What is anxiety?

Anxiety is a natural human adaptive mechanism that permits us to be alert to a committed event. Actually, a certain degree of anxiety provides an appropriate component of caution in dangerous situations. This moderate anxiety can help us stay focused and face the challenges ahead.
Sometimes, however, the system response to anxiety is excessive, not working properly. More specifically, anxiety is disproportionated to the situation, occurring even in the absence of any ostensible danger. The subject feels paralyzed with a feeling of helplessness what generally leads to a deterioration of psychosocial and physiological functioning. The anxiety is considered as a disorder when it occurs at inappropriate times, or is so intense and durable that it interferes with normal activities of the person.

Types and symptoms

Disorder of generalized anxiety:
This disorder generates a chronic tension even when nothing seems to provoke it. This excessive concern or nervousness manifests almost daily being typically diagnosed when patient  has suffered the symptoms during a minimum of six months.

Panic disorder (or panic attack):
The patient experiences recurrent panic attacks that arise spontaneously. It is an acute and extreme anxiety in which often the person who suffers it thinks that will die. These sudden attacks of intense fear are not a direct cause. Sometimes, patients with this disorder develop anxiety to the next attack whose occurrence can not be predicted, it is called anticipatory anxiety.

Phobic disorder:
This disorder have as essential characteristic the presence of an irrational and persistent fear to a specific object,  activity or situation. In consequence, the individual tend to avoid the feared object. For example, fear of flying, birds or open spaces.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder:

In this disorder the patients manifest involuntary thoughts or actions to not generate anxiety. The subjects recognize the absurdity of their thoughts or actions. For example, washing hands every little while.

Post-traumatic stress disorder:
It occurs when unpleasant psychological effects are manifested after the impact of a emotional trauma, war, rape, etc. It is characterized by persistent memories of the traumatic event, an emotional state with heightened vigilance and a general reduction of interest in daily events.


There are several approaches for treating the anxiety.  Drugs (benzodiazepines, buspirone), psychotherapy, Neurofeedback, SHG and relaxation techniques, are the main procedures.

Data and numbers

Anxiety disorders are collectively the most common psychiatric disease. Among them highlights phobic disorder.  About 7 per cent of women and 4.3 per cent of men suffer from specific phobias (some animal, an object, darkness, etc.), while the so-called social phobias (the ability of a person to interact in an affable manner with others) are found in 13 per cent of the population.
Generalized anxiety appears in 3 to 5 per cent of adults (at some point during the year). Women are twice as likely to present it.
Panic disorder is less common and is diagnosed to less than 1 percent of the population. Women are 2 to 3 times more likely to suffer it.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder affects about 2.3 per cent of adults and occurs with approximately equal frequency in women than in men.
The post-traumatic stress affects, at least, 1 percent of the population sometime during life, although in people at higher risk, such as war veterans,  it has a higher incidence.

Neurofeedback application in  anxiety

Neurofeedback is a neuropsychological technique that allows self-regulation of the central nervous system. In cases of anxiety, the main benefits of its application are:

– Decline and disappearance of physiological signs of distress and discomfort.
– Increasing of capacity of the management and control of stressors.
– Increasing of competition capacity, security and management of their own resources.
– Better capabilities of threat management.
– Increasing of self-esteem.
– Improvement of social relations.
– Performance optimization.
– Enhancing the capacity of attention and concentration.
– Reduction of physical exertion.
– Improvement of mood.
– Disappearance or decreasing of irritability.
– Increasing of emotional stability.
– Increasing of ability to move following objectives rather than reaction to stimuli, whether rewarding or aversive.



¿What is depression?

WHO describes depression as a common mental disorder. This is characterized by the presence of sadness, loss of interest or pleasure, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, sleep or appetite, tiredness and lack of concentration.

Depression can get to become chronic or recurrent and substantially hinder performance at work or school. In its most severe form, it can lead to suicide. If it is mild, it can be treated without drugs but when it affects moderately or severely may need medication, professional psychotherapy or treatments to help self-regulation of central nervous system.
This is a disorder that can be diagnosed reliably and treated by non-specialists in the field of primary care.

Types and symptoms

Depending on the number and the intensity of the symptoms, the depression phases can be classify in mild, moderate or severe.

A fundamental distinction for people suffering depression is established between people with and without a history of manic episodes. Both types of depression can be chronic and relapsing, especially when not treated.

Unipolar depression:

During the typical depressive episodes there is depressed mood, loss of interest and ability to enjoy, and energy reduction resulting in a decreasing in activity, all for a minimum of two weeks. Many people with depression also have symptoms of anxiety, sleep disturbances and appetite, feelings of guilt and low self-esteem, difficulty at concentrating and even medically unexplained symptoms.
Depending on the number and intensity of symptoms, depressive episodes can be classified as mild, moderate or severe. People with mild depressive episodes have some difficulties to continue their normal work and social activities although they do not probably suspend them completely. In contrast, during a severe depressive episode it is highly unlikely that the patient can maintain their social, work or domestic activities if it is not with great limitations.
Bipolar disorder:

This type of depression typically manifests manic and depressive episodes separated by intervals with normal mood. Manic episodes occur with elevated or irritable mood, hyperactivity, logorrhea, excessive self-esteem and decreasing of need for sleep.

Contributing factors and prevention

Depression is the result of complex interactions between social, psychological and biological factors. It can create more stress and dysfunction worsening the living situation of the person and therefore  its own depression.
There are relationships between depression and physical health; thus, for example, cardiovascular diseases may cause depression and vice versa.
It is shown that prevention programs reduce depression. Among the effective community strategies to prevent them are, school programs of prevention of child abuse, to improve the aptitude to resolution of problems of children and adolescents, or programs to improve cognitive and social aptitudes.
Interventions directed to parents of children with behavioural problems may reduce depressive symptoms of parents and improve the results of their children. Exercise programs for the elderly are also effective for preventing depression.

Diagnosis and treatment

There are effective treatments for depression, a condition that can be diagnosed and treated reliably by trained health professionals working in primary care. The therapeutic options recommended for moderate to severe depression consist of a basic psychosocial support combined with antidepressant drugs or psychotherapy, such as cognitive-behavioural therapy, interpersonal psychotherapy or techniques for solving problems such as Neurofeedback.

Antidepressants can be effective in moderate to severe depression, but not in mild cases. They should not be used to treat depression in children or as first-line therapy in adolescents with whom the antidepressants must be used with extreme caution.

Data y numbers

– Depression is a common mental disorder that affects more than 350 million people worldwide.
– In the worst cases, depression can lead to suicide.
– Depression is the leading cause of disability and contributes substantially to the global burden of morbidity.
– There are effective treatments for depression.
– Depression affects more women than men.


Neurofeedback application in depression

Neurofeedback is a neuropsychological technique that allows self-regulation of the central nervous system. In cases of depression, the main benefits of its application are:

– Increasing of motivation.
– Development of emotional management.
– Improved mood.
– Strengthening of social relations.
– Increasing of motivation guided.
– Decrease or disappearance of difficulty sleeping (improving sleep hygiene).
– Increasing of muscle tone.
– Reduction or elimination of autolytic and irrational thoughts as well as suicide ideation.
– Decrease or disappearance of irrational fears and cognitive distortions.

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