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LIFE QUALITY RESOURCES

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For further information about neurofeedback, biofeedback, and psychotherapeutic services offered by Drs. Dan and Lucy Chartier and their associates, contact:

 

LIFE QUALITY RESOURCES

5613 Duraleigh Road, #101
Raleigh, NC 27612
Telephone: (919) 782-4597
www.LifeQualityResources.org

At Life Quality Resources,
Healing Manifests in Many Ways

Doctors Dan and Lucy Chartier of Life Quality Resources (LQR) in Raleigh, are exceptionally well versed in the healing arts. Promoting healing is, in fact, what they do. Specializing in many approaches to bring mind and body back into balance, they utilize tools such as biofeedback, neurofeedback, psychotherapy, Nexalin therapy (Transcranial Electrical Stimulation), and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) to help their patients heal, inside and out.

Dr. Lucy Chartier and Dr. Dan Chartier often blend their interests and skills to meet the special needs of patients.

“In my view,” says Dr. Dan Chartier, a PhD psychologist and psychophysiologist, “the most effective approach is to recognize that healing is a natural process. It’s what the body is programmed to do, if given even minimal opportunity. Every cut, scrape, and burn will ultimately form a healing scar as the body works to repair itself. Every symptom of a cold is the body’s response to a virus, working to heal as it attempts to fight off the invader.

“Our work here at Life Quality Resources is all about helping to support the natural ability that the body has to heal.”

Rooting Out the Cause

To offer this support, Drs. Dan and Lucy Chartier have mastered the utilization of various feedback mechanisms and physiological sources of information—such as surface EMG—to help patients help themselves, by getting more effective use out of their own intrinsic capacity to heal. Surface EMG is a technique in which electrodes are placed on (not into) the skin overlying a muscle to detect the electrical activity of the muscle.

“Migraine headaches are a simple example of how we use a number of methods to address the root of a problem,” Dr. Lucy Chartier explains. She holds a PhD in clinical psychology with a focus on early childhood development, and also practices as a psychiatric nurse practitioner.

“We know in most cases that a classic migraine is an issue of the autonomic nervous system basically being in overdrive, often due to stress. When someone experiences stress, small blood vessels like those found in the fingers, toes, and brain, become constricted. This leads to symptoms such as cold hands. When the stress is over—say you get a week off from work, or exams are finally passed—and the autonomic nervous system begins to relax, those blood vessels dilate, causing increased blood flow in the hands and—importantly in this case—in the brain.”

For those who experience migraines, she explains, “it is that suddenly increased blood flow that causes highly sensitive receptors in the vessels—called stretch receptors—to trigger the intense pain we call a migraine.

“Patients often come to us and say ‘I don’t understand it. I had a weekend off. I had no stress. My job stress was over Friday afternoon. Why did I have a headache after I woke up on Saturday morning?’ Well, it’s because it’s not just the stress itself that can cause issues, it’s the consequences of that stress, the physical aftermath.”

Warm Hands and the Paths to Healing

To heal from a condition like migraines—not just treat symptoms with medication, but actually heal the mechanism—one must learn to keep warm hands, Dr. Dan Chartier explains.

“What we help patients learn in a case like this is to re-regulate the autonomic nervous system response, so a client is not walking around all the time with cold hands. We do this because, although we can’t necessarily be aware of when we are causing blood vessel constriction in the brain, we can tell when it’s happening in our hands—it causes them to become cool. And if it’s happening in the hands, it’s probably happening elsewhere in the body. So, if a person can become aware of this tension pattern in their autonomic nervous system, by paying attention to a symptom such as cool hands through the use of fingertip temperature and therapeutic guidance, they can begin to break that pattern. As they begin changing the pattern, they begin preventing the conditions that trigger migraines.”

An Intimate Relationship

Dr. Dan Chartier’s mention of therapeutic guidance is another important part of the process at Life Quality Resources, where the innate relationship between body and mind is a well-understood foundation of all approaches to treatment.

“I am first and foremost a psychologist,” Dr. Chartier says. “Everything we do begins from the psychological perspective. We can help resolve the involuntary patterns of muscle tension causing your pain, but what caused such a pattern to get set up in the first place? What stress, family relationship, or relationship with the self is causing the body to have this unhealthy physical reaction? From this perspective, we can work together not only to address the physiological issue, but also the psychological contributors to its development.”

Healing Attention

Whether diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, or simply seeking to improve concentration, children and adults alike will find resources and tools that address the root cause of these issues at Life Quality Resources, Dr. Lucy Chartier notes.

“The human brain has a natural ability to focus,” she says. “Unfortunately, our culture has not really capitalized on this ability and doesn’t work to help that process be deeply learned. We live in a world where rapid changes on screens—with which we are utterly surrounded— train the brain to shift its attention rapidly. It does not in any way cultivate focus.

“Using EEG assessments, we can detect those inattentive patterns just as we can pick up muscle tension with surface EMG. We can then help a person learn to improve those attention behaviors, those brain-based attention patterns, by using feedback indicating when the brain is moving toward a more focused place. Primarily, what this means is less slow-frequency activity in the theta frequency band, more faster-frequency activity in the beta band, and the single metric that can be used is the so-called theta-beta ratio. Lowering this ratio using neurofeedback, we see improvement in attention, as well as better academic and career success.”

“The take home point,” Dr. Dan Chartier says, “is that we have this wonderful capacity to heal ourselves—to be healed through the common-sense direct application of behavioral approaches with no side effects. One of our clients jokingly commented about his feet and hands feeling too warm after having learned to relax them, and how odd it was to no longer wear gloves even in the summertime.”