Susan Whitfield-Gabrieli conducting brain imaging scan

Could mind games help cure teen depression?

Could mind games help cure teen depression? Brain imaging study by a Northeastern researcher shows promise

In the midst of a devastating mental health crisis affecting thousands of American teens, Northeastern University psychology professor Susan Whitfield-Gabrieli says a non-invasive remedy for depression and anxiety offers hope.

In a brain imaging study conducted at Northeastern’s Biomedical Imaging Center, teenagers using mindfulness meditation guided by neurofeedback were able to calm a network of regions of the brain associated with depression, anxiety, ADHD and other disorders.

At the same time that region, known as the default mode network (DMN) grew less active, the central executive network (CEN) associated with goal-setting, problem-solving and sustained attention increased in function.

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Photo by Ruby Wallau/Northeastern University