“Having negative social experiences and growing up in stressful environments are two environmental factors that can contribute to the development of social anxiety disorder. As with most diagnoses, there is a dynamic interplay between genetics and environment that can determine the eventual development of a disorder. It’s important to understand the diagnosis is not a life sentence of anxiety, avoidance, and narrowing down of potential to avoid social interaction.”

– Dr. Amy Serin

Dr. Serin was interviewed for this informative article by HealthyWay.com about managing Social Anxiety Disorder. Here is what she (as well as other doctors) had to share:

Social anxiety disorder is difficult to deal with. It can affect all areas of your life, from your career to your schooling to your relationships. Fortunately, it can be treated. Here’s what you need to know.

Many of us get nervous when it comes to public speaking. We might feel slightly frazzled or shy in social situations. We might even avoid large gatherings or unfamiliar social spaces.

But what does it mean if you have a constant fear of social situations? What if you worry about events for days or weeks before they take place? What if your avoidance of social situations affects your career, schooling, or relationships? What if your anxiety is affecting you on a physical level, causing you to become sweaty or nauseated around others?

If you have experienced these symptoms, you’re not alone. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, recent statistics suggest about 12.1 percent of U.S. adults experience social anxiety disorder at some point in their lives. There are a few risk factors that increase your chances of having social anxiety disorder, including being divorced or widowed and experiencing stressful life events. Women and girls are more likely to experience social anxiety disorder.

Read the rest of this informative article on Healthyway.com >

We are so excited to announce that TouchPoint Originals, the neuroscience consumer digital wearable product invented by Dr. Amy Serin and co-developed by The TouchPoint Solution CEO Vicki Mayo has received the Gold Award under the Wellness Technology category at the prestigious 2018 Edison Awards!

Being recognized with an Edison Award™ is one of the highest accolades a company can receive in the name of innovation and business success. The Edison Awards honor excellence in new product and service development, marketing, human-centered design and innovation.

Thank you so much to the Edison Awards for recognizing this important technology and helping us spread the word to help more people around the world.

Read more by visiting the Edison Awards website >

SharpBrains.com reporter Alvaro Fernandez, interviewed Dr. Serin to find out more about stress and how we can avoid its detrimental effects. Sharpbrains is a recognized website that tracks health and wellness applications of Brain Science.

Neuropsychologist Amy Serin, Co-Founder of Brainnovations Winner ‘The Touchpoint Solution’, would like to see everyone avoid the detrimental effects of an overactive stress response.

Dr. Serin, what surprised you the most from the Judges’ questions and feedback during the Brainnovations Pitch Contest?

It was great that at least one of the judges had already purchased and started using our product so we could delve into the nuances of our technology quickly. And I was thrilled that all judges saw the possibilities to create significant global impact.

In a nutshell, what is the core idea behind TouchPoints?

Too many people suffer too much stress, often leading to sleeplessness, cravings, anger, poor focus, poor performance, and feeling overwhelmed. TouchPoints aim at reducing stress by delivering haptic microvibrations via wearable devices worn on both sides of the body. The bi-lateral alternating stimulation (BLAST) technology can help reduce stress significantly while the wearer multi-tasks at home, work, or school. The key is that our wearables don’t simply give information or cues — they can actually help reduce stress.

When and how did the idea come to you?

The idea evolved over the last decade while I was practicing neuropsychology…

Read the rest of the article on SharpBrains.com >

Think you know depression? Read this to see how stress and childhood trauma can impact depression.This is a very informative article published on the Harvard Health website. We offer effective treatment of depression. If you or someone close to you is suffering from depression, please let us know by completing our inquiry form.

Introduction:

It’s often said that depression results from a chemical imbalance, but that figure of speech doesn’t capture how complex the disease is. Research suggests that depression doesn’t spring from simply having too much or too little of certain brain chemicals. Rather, there are many possible causes of depression, including faulty mood regulation by the brain, genetic vulnerability, stressful life events, medications, and medical problems. It’s believed that several of these forces interact to bring on depression.

Read the full article on Harvard Health >

Tourette Syndrome (TS) has been the subject of misinformation and jokes. In college I read a humor article in our newspaper. The writer described yelling expletives at someone who beat her to a parking space in a crowded parking lot only to later find out that person was attending the same funeral as she was. When she saw the man she said, “I’m sorry, I have Tourette’s.” Being a college student who had no idea what suffering can occur as a result of Tourette Syndrome (TS), I laughed at the time. Fast forward to my career and having treated many children and families that have been affected by TS and I now realize it’s no laughing matter.

Just like the misnomer that dyslexia means people reverse numbers and letters (which can be a part of dyslexia but really it’s a problem with phonological processing), Tourette Syndrome is very misunderstood. To be diagnosed with TS, an individual has to have both motor and vocal tics. A tic is an uncontrolled, sudden repetitive movement or sound. An example of a vocal tic is clearing one’s throat or abruptly saying a word out loud. Motor tics involve movements like quickly shrugging shoulders involuntarily or moving one’s mouth. Blinking excessively can even be a tic. And sometimes it’s hard to tease out what is a tic and what isn’t. For example, someone with allergies may sniffle quite a bit whereas someone with tics might sniffle multiple times with no trigger.

According to Tourette.org, about 1% of children have tics and/or TS. Sometimes tics are transient- meaning they will go away. However, some persist into adulthood. Many people with TS are also diagnosed with ADHD and OCD. Individuals with Tics often go into fight or flight mode and have rages. Just as the brain can’t “gate” impulses effectively, there may be a difference in individuals’ with TS in their ability to control their sympathetic nervous response. This is where TouchPoints may be able to help individuals with TS.

I spoke with Dr. Gregory Sambuchi, Director of Neurology and Medical Director of Mount St. Mary’s Hospital’s Stroke Program in New York, about his experience with his daughter Olivia, who has TS. Olivia has been using TouchPoints for a few months and has experienced significant reduction in anxiety and tics. Dr. Sambuchi’s first comment to me was “You’re on to something here!” After sharing TouchPoints with others with TS at a bowling fundraiser, he and other parents were astounded to watch a young girl with TS rage after only hitting one pin. “I thought, let’s see if TouchPoints could help” so Dr. Sambuchi allowed her to try the TouchPoints. Because TouchPoints can be worn on the body without interfering with activities, the girl stood up to bowl with them on. Those watching held their breath- bracing for a possible meltdown- She pulled back the bowling ball, released, and…..gutter ball. She then turned around, sat down, and has no emotional reaction. “I couldn’t believe it,” said Dr. Sambuchi. “She didn’t go into fight or flight. It made me think of how Olivia’s life would have been different if we had TouchPoints for her while she was growing up.” Dr. Sambuchi is now a friend of mine and a superfan, and we look forward to more stories of how TouchPoints help those with any condition.

Dr. Amy Serin
Founder and Neuropsychologist
Serin Center

Learn more about TouchPoints >

Our attitude toward health has never been more holistic—it seems like Western culture is finally syncing with its Eastern neighbours, as our approach focuses more and more on prevention rather than cures. It also means that rather than simply looking after our immune systems, we’re now employing a more 360-degree approach to wellness, covering everything from our guts, our hearts and more recently, our brains.

“Health doesn’t mean the absence of illness anymore,” states neuropsychologist Dr. Amy Serin. “Nowadays people are looking for more ways to feel satisfied, more joyful, more mindful and basically to experience their daily life differently.” And she’s undoubtedly witnessed a massive change in the way we view brain health. “I think that there’s a new emerging neuroscience that’s making its way into the mainstream, covering everything from brain-training games and software to brain stimulation devices,” she explains. “And this has us all thinking about how we can improve our own brain functioning.”

It’s a thought that has crossed our minds countless times too, and so we asked Dr. Serin (who’s also the co-founder and chief science officer of a pretty insane stress-relieving device—more on that later) to share four easy ways to care for our brains every single day.

Eat more omega-3s

We all know that the things we ingest through our diet have a big impact on the functioning of our bodies—so is there anything we might be missing? “When it comes to supplementing the diet, I wouldn’t recommend a one-size-fits-all approach,” reveals Dr. Serin. “But if I were to make a general recommendation, most of us fail to get the right ratio of essential fatty acids.”

Basically, we’re ingesting too many omega-6s (which you find in flaxseed, nuts and pumpkin seeds) and not enough omega-3s (found in cold water high-fat fish, dark leafy greens and avocado). “The fatty sheath that coats neurons is called myelin, and the smooth transition of electrical signals is dependent on that sheath being made of the right compositions of fats. If you have too many omega-6s, it sends the body and the brain into inflammation, which means brain function is far from optimised,” explains Dr. Serin.

You can get more of those healthy omega-3s through uncooked olive, grape-seed and avocado oils, and coconut oil is thought to have a beneficial effect on brain health too. But just because an oil is plant-based doesn’t mean it’s healthy—lots of oils, such as corn oils, are high in omega-6s, so we need to control our intake of those.

First and foremost, get more sleep

Before even considering any form of brain training, Dr. Serin wants us to take things back to basics. “Brain training can range from a puzzle app on your phone all the way up to neuro feedback and neuro modulation exercises that we do in our clinics, but I think we tend to complicate things a little,” she explains. “The most important thing that people can do to optimise their brain health is to get enough sleep.” And while we all know how hard that is, it makes sense that a tired brain just isn’t ever going to work to its full capacity. “Meditation, yoga, exercise and learning some kind of novel skill are all important, but sleep and healthy behaviours are the base of the pyramid—you need to start there.”

Try progressive muscle relaxation

Need some help in the sleep department? We’ve got plenty of advice here, but Dr. Serin has some words of wisdom too. “For a lot of people breathing can help when trying to sleep but if you’re really stressed out, it’s often the last thing you think of, and you actually can’t even get those deep breaths in if your nervous system is too active,” says Dr. Serin. We’ve all been there, right?

But, there is an answer: progressive muscle relaxation. “What you do is tense up all your muscles while you inhale, hold it for a moment and release as you exhale. You can start with your toes and add on muscle groups until your entire body is tensed. The whole process will take between five and 10 minutes,” Dr. Serin suggests.

Try the Touch Point device

Like a FitBit for the brain, the Touch Point is a two-part wearable tech device that helps the brain deal with stress—Dr. Serin is the neuropsychologists behind its inception and development.

“Stress turns on like a light switch and turns off more like a dimmer switch—i.e., much more slowly,” explains Dr. Serin. “But we’ve found a way to turn it off more instantly with these devices. They provide a sensory over-ride, giving off static micro vibrations that integrate themselves into the network inside the brain that decides what to do in stressful situations.”

Sounds good, right? “It’s not a conscious network—you don’t even know it’s happening—but when you wear the Touch Points, they can actively pull your brain out of a stressful state. Our data shows that it removes 70% off stress in 30 seconds,” says Dr. Serin.

Plus, they can help you go on feeling less stressed throughout the day, says Dr. Serin: “Once you’ve lowered your stress and enter a calmer state, your baseline is lower, so as you go about your day, you’re less likely to get irritated or stressed out.”

So, when it comes to brain health, it’s pretty apparent that we needn’t make things complicated. Just be cautious of stress, and employ these tactics to help control it.

Source Article: Byrdie.co.uk

It’s back to school time, and students are transitioning back to class with stress. A national survey of college freshmen found 50 percent reported feeling stressed most or all of the time and 36 percent did not feel as if they were in control of managing the stress of day-to-day college life.

Students accept stress as a part of their daily lives without considering that cutting-edge neuroscience offers a quick, easy solution. In 2018, we have self-driving cars and blockchain –so why would we leave stress, sleep, and performance to chance?

Enter TouchPoints, innovative neuroscientific wearables that can reduce stress by over 70% in as little as 30 seconds. Using gentle, haptic microvibrations called BLAST (bilateral alternating stimulation tactile), Touchpoints are designed to reduce stress non-invasively and help the brain restore calm nervous system functioning.

This is a game-changer for students juggling the demands of school – whatever their grade level. Here are three stress hacks students can use to reduce stress in real-time this semester, utilizing TouchPoints and other methods.

#1 Before An Exam
As a neuropsychologist, I see many students who find it extremely difficult to perform well on exams. They study hard, master the material, but come test time, the brick wall of stress blocks their access to what they know they know and when the test is over, the answers flood in.

Create a routine to cool down beforehand. When stressed, logical thinking shuts down making it hard to access answers. De-stressing just before a test can improve performance and ensure that hard work pays off.

#2 Get Rid of Procrastination
Ever wonder why people avoid studying or can’t get started on a big project? Our sympathetic nervous system is designed to signal us to avoid things that are stressful or uncomfortable. When overwhelmed, people tend to do other things, wait until the last minute, or simply avoid tasks all together. The remedy? De-stressing while you think of a task and are engaged in the task can re-route those avoidant neural pathways into new ones that won’t have you procrastinating.

Students who use TouchPoints while thinking of an overwhelming project notice it suddenly doesn’t seem so overwhelming and are more likely to get started. When they use them while completing tasks, they often wonder how they felt so overwhelmed to begin with. Students who have used TouchPoints while studying have reported a 50 percent increase in engagement and a 27 percent increase in attention.

#3 For a Better Night’s Sleep
Even one night of poor sleep can tank cognitive and academic performance the next day. But many students can’t fall asleep easily due to stress, which creates a perpetual cycle of poor performance and fatigue. Create a routine for kids before bedtime to wind down, and make sure that they stick with it.

At the End of the Day
Less stress can equal more productivity and time for fun, which we think could make for a fantastic 2018. That’s what I call better living through neuroscience.

Written by: Dr. Amy Serin

For further information visit North Phoenix Family

I’ll admit I was skeptical at first. Can wearing two vibrating devices really reduce stress? That’s what TouchPoints claims to do, and as I found out this week

The company was co-founded by neuropsychologist Dr. Amy Serin as part of her effort to help people who suffer from PTSD. During the course of her research, she discovered that wearing a pair of tiny pulsing gadgets can also help gifted children or stressed-out adults. In fact, she told me that the product is most popular among women ages 35 to 55, who are typically dealing with the stresses of managing family life and making sure the kids get from A to B with everything they need. TouchPoints can also help with things like night terrors or other sleep-related issues.

The devices are tiny squares about the size of a watch face. There’s a single button for turning them on and off, and they’ll automatically pair with your phone — if you have Bluetooth turned on, of course. From there, a companion app will ask you a series of questions to determine your stress level before suggesting a preset. And yes, you can always switch to a new one or dial in the intensity and rhythm settings manually. TouchPoints can be placed on your wrists, in your pocket or anywhere you can feel the vibrations. However, you do have to wear two of them, since the soothing effect is creating by a pulsing back and forth. For that reason, I opted for the in-the-pocket method rather than slapping them on my wrists.

As a demonstration of how well TouchPoints work, the company offered brain scans here at CES. The first part of the test includes thinking about something super stressful and allowing a neuroscientist to take some detailed images of your brain activity. After that, I was handed a pair of vibrating TouchPoints and asked to think about the same stressful thing again, and more images were taken.

As you can see in the image above, the left is the first scan and the right side is the second. The beta frequency is associated with stress or overactivity in the brain — as illustrated by the red dots in the first scan. Once I was handed the TouchPoints, though, I was never able to stress myself out to the same level as the first time around. Trust me, I tried. What’s more, the pulsing sensation was quite soothing throughout almost a full day of wear. I had to remove them to charge in the early evening, otherwise I would’ve kept them on from morning until evening (more than eight hours). It was a lack of planning on my part, not due to any battery-life issues.

Sure, they work well, but there are a couple downsides to wearing TouchPoints. First, the vibrations are quite loud if you find yourself in a quiet room — similar to the buzzing of a phone. I had to turn them off during an audio demo later in the day after some dirty looks from fellow show attendees. The second, for me, is the price. At $240, they’re not something you’d purchase without some consideration. However, if they work for the masses as well as they worked for me — and TouchPoints has plenty of research that says they do — that’s a small price to pay for drastically reducing your stress levels, being able to sleep better at night or getting helping with a range of neurological issues you might be facing.

Article By: Billy Steele/Engadget

Visit EnGadget.com for more >

 

Dr. Amy Serin interviews with the Clark Howard Show of WSBT 2 News of Atlanta Georgia at CES 2018 live.

Clark’s takeaway: The fact that this tackles stress in a non-invasive way without pharmaceuticals is a big plus, Clark says. He also appreciates that the  company is dedicated to the wellness of veterans and those who have served the country. “How great that someone was inspired to do something for our brave men and women in our military.”

Read the article and listen to the 5 minute radio interview >

 

Finding another female-founded tech startup with ambitions to scale in Arizona is like looking for the mythical unicorn, said Vicki Mayo, cofounder of TouchPoint Solution, a wearable technology that reduces the stress response.

So when she heard about Project Entrepreneur’s Summit in Los Angeles, where women entrepreneurs had the chance to connect with one another and workshop their ideas with investors, she jumped for joy. Project Entrepreneur is a partnership between Rent the Runway co-founders Jennifer Hyman and Jenny Fleiss and UBS. Both companies are on a mission: to break traditional barriers women face in growing their companies big.

It Pays To Ask

Mayo was brought back down to earth when she tried to sign up. The event was sold out.  A very determined woman, she  called the organizers to ask if there was any way to make an exception and allow her to attend. She was put on a wait list. Then, a week later, Mayo was told she could attend.

Find A Cofounder With Complementary Skills

Mayo’s 4-year-old daughter suffered from night terrors. One night, after being up all night with her daughter, Mayo called a friend, Amy Serin, a neuropsychologist. As it turned out, Serin was working on technology that helps people reduce their stress and anxiety levels.

Mayo’s daughter tried it that night. Within 30 seconds, she fell asleep. The next day she awoke happy and refreshed.
Mayo told her friend that everyone needs to know about this product. But, as a clinician, this was out of Serin’s area of expertise. Fortunately, it was within Mayo’s skill set since she already had a successful IT company.

Together, they formed TouchPoint Solutions. It uses the the technology Serin developed —  Bi-Lateral Alternating Stimulation Tactile (BLAST) stimulation to give users a gentle vibration that affects the brain and alters the body’s fight, flight or freeze response. In addition academic research substantiating the efficacy of the technique, Serin has case studies and her her own research to support her claims about the device.

Raise Money From The Crowd

They raised more than $76,000 on Kickstarter — 508% of their goal — and more than $250,000 on Indiegogo — 953% of their goal.