Interviews

Life Is An Adventure! Suzanne Mark & Daniel Sternberg, Ph.D. – Ashland Neurofeedback

Introducing Suzanne Mark and Daniel Sternberg, Ph.D. of Ashland Neurofeedback. Together Suzanne and Daniel work to support their clients using cutting edge technology and therapies to unravel and reintegrate some of the deepest and most complicated parts of ourselves. From early childhood traumas, to the day-to-day wear and tear of life, Ashland Neurofeedback helps you unwind and recover your resilience so that you can rediscover a part of yourself that you may have lost. In today´s interview Suzanne & Daniel take us into their practice to tell us about their life and work together here in the Rogue Valley.

Hi Suzanne & Daniel, thanks for taking the time to speak with me today and welcome back to the LocalsGuide. How are you both doing and how has business been going this past year for you all?

Hi Shields! It is our pleasure. We are doing great, thanks. We are dedicating this article to my amazing father, Jerome Mark, who passed away on January 31st. He was the most resilient man whose core philosophy was, “Life is an Adventure.” This past year we have embraced grief and had a lot of fun. We also added some powerful tools in the rapid removal of trauma. We have both started using a group of tools called Brainspotting. This is a life-changing therapy that is easily applied to many issues such as addiction, old triggering events, PTSD, to all areas of life where one might be stuck. We love it because of its wide applicability and efficacy. It is really a game changer.

To begin with, will you please introduce yourselves to us and describe the work you are doing together here in Southern Oregon with Ashland Neurofeedback?

Thanks Shields, we have been working in Ashland for almost 10 years. It’s been very gratifying and really FUN to work with such motivated clients who are not settling for the status quo with regard to their issues or their options for treatment. Amazingly, Daniel has been a clinical psychologist for more than 40 years and was an early adopter of cutting-edge clinical tools like EMDR, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Parts Work (Internal Family Systems), Releasing, Breath Work, and others. He has inspired me to find therapies that are more efficient and effective for trauma and “life stuckness.” For most anything really. I do my part with the Neurofeedback, which is a powerful stand alone therapy that can also work well with other tools, such as emotional release work and coaching. It seems that approaching the client’s goals from customized angles really works well. I do some of this while they are getting Neurofeedback.

Suzanne, how did you first get started with your business and what continues to inspire you as you move forward?

I had been shopping for similar technologies for many years. I got connected with IASIS Microcurrent Neurofeedback through a friend, Dr. Dane Roubos. My motivation was to heal myself from a head injury I had sustained in Costa Rica a few years before. It was my first concussion and it really reduced my functionality. After a couple months of sessions on myself, I started to notice all kinds of positive changes like increased resiliency, relaxation, cessation of depression and other post-concussive symptoms, like vertigo. I was also able to get off medication with the help of my doctor. Since then, I have recovered from another (!) concussion and a post concussive TIA (stroke-like event). This business has been about healing myself first. I know what many people are going through because I have experienced challenges myself. That was a huge motivation. We all go through things and I am no exception.

Suzanne, can you please give us an overview of the services that Ashland Neurofeedback is providing?

Yes, our services include IASIS Microcurrent Neurofeedback and individualized approaches that have helped many people experience muscle re-education and relaxation and may also log improvements in: ADD/ADHD, Addiction, Anger, Anxiety, Attachment Issues, Brain Fog, Depression, Fibromyalgia, Insomnia, Lyme Symptoms, Neuropathy, TBI, Muscular Tingling, Muscular Weakness, Numbness, Pain, PTSD, Post Stroke, Post Concussion, Stress, Trauma… and many more. Dr. Daniel Sternberg provides psychological services for Trauma as a Licensed Clinical Psychologist. As I said, we offer Brainspotting Coaching and EMDR. This includes a huge “bag of tricks and tools” to help you feel your best and optimize your health. We also offer emotional releasing support, BEMER and Bioflex Low Level Light Therapy. Some of these tools are included in neurofeedback sessions. We find continual inspiration from our clients, who motivate us to find solutions that will help them realize a new outlook and improved vitality.

Daniel, could you please speak more about the underlying technology behind the type of Neurofeedback you use?

IASIS Technologies Corporation developed IASIS MicroCurrent Neurofeedback (MCN), a form of LIP-tES or Low-Intensity Pulses using Transcranial Electrical Stimulation.

It works to dis-entrain stuck, dysfunctional patterns in the brain and central nervous system, in order to become more balanced. That means a balance between parasympathetic and sympathetic function. Simply put, it causes brief microcurrent stimulation that causes a temporary fluctuation in brainwaves. This change allows the brain to reorganize itself and shift from its formerly fixed patterns. This is analogous to re-booting a computer. We like that it is so gentle that most people cannot perceive it while it works. The changes can be profound. It is FDA Approved and indicated for relaxation and muscle re-education.

Suzanne, you are always growing and excelling with your own personal growth and training. What have you been working on this past year and how does it tie into supporting the clients in your practice?

Thanks for asking, Shields. Yes, I have been in self-growth mode because I get to work on myself first! This has been fun and life-changing. Brainspotting is a service we both added because many people want rapid support to bring themselves to optimal health and function. It is our goal to help you make the improvements that YOU define in your intake. We have people build a list of what they want to heal and we go through these things in sessions. We watch your “bad numbers” (that indicate areas of trauma or poor function) go from 7 – 10 all the way down to a 0, 1 or 2 (indicating healing or resiliency). Our goal is that the issues people are concerned about reduce or go away and they “graduate” from treatment.

Old trauma, addiction, weight loss, low brain function, health issues, anxiety, chronic anger, shame and guilt, etc… By creating shifts in clear, predefined areas, people are able to balance key aspects of life, such as relationships, physical activity, career, joy and spirituality. They can stop worrying about the past and start feeling fulfilled. We wanted to provide this as an option for people who want sustainable health change in many areas. And, we LOVE what Brainspotting is doing for us personally!

Yes, so much of your work is about empowering your clients and helping them to step into their own sense of self-responsibility. Will you please talk more about this?

That is SO true! Change happens by focusing on what is RIGHT about you! You are an amazing person. You are resourceful! You are powerful! You might just need a little tweaking (laughter and smiles). We work with those positive qualities as resource states that you can access for your healing. Things change when people refuse to settle for the way it is. We serve people who want to be more functional, mobile and who want to engage in life without having to accept a disability or a lost ability, and to find a way to nudge them into a new reality. It’s about practical, actionable changes. IASIS Microcurrent and these other therapies help get people into a place where they do not have to accept that “this is the way it is going to be.” It has to be a holistic process of attaining wellness.

It is their responsibility to decide to forgive, heal, move forward, let go of the past, feel better, let themselves or someone else off the hook, stop playing the victim, etc. It is a decision. We use releasing processes so people can do this more easily by going to the root of their limitations. Many people are processing their emotions in maladaptive ways. This is easy to change. There is actually GOLD on the inside of your limiting thoughts and feelings.

The Releasing we teach focuses on letting go of the attachment or aversion underneath our suffering. We have taught many useful processes at OLLI as well as internationally for 25+ years, in English and Spanish. It is effective stuff that works really well with Neurofeedback; while you are in the chair receiving the treatment. This all works best when the client takes responsibility for themselves and their experience.

Suzanne & Daniel, please tell us about the work you are doing in regards to trauma.

We like using things that work, either alone or in combination. A partial list of therapies is: IASIS MCN (Microcurrent Neurofeedback), EMDR, CBT (Dr. Daniel provides these), Brainspotting, Emotional Release, Relaxation/Stress Management training, and other tools for support between sessions. We give you things you use on your own to uncover and develop resourcefulness and resilience.

How do we know when we have trauma? What signs and symptoms can we pay attention to in ourselves that help us to see our own patterns that are trauma-related?

Good question. Some people do not realize they have trauma. Some signs are: being easily startled or frightened, always being on guard for danger, self-destructive behavior, such as drinking too much or driving too fast. Trouble sleeping or oversleeping. Trouble concentrating. Irritability, angry outbursts or aggressive behavior. Overwhelming guilt or shame.

Trauma is caused by negative or disturbing experiences. The Adverse Childhood Experiences Questionnaire (ACE) is a great indicator of trauma sustained before the age of 18. We screen to rule out PTSD. We also use the Amen Clinic Questionnaire. We compile a list of adult traumatic or disturbing experiences as well as negative cognitions. We work on these in a step wise fashion, either in a coaching capacity along with Neurofeedback (Suzanne) or with EMDR, etc.. (Daniel).

The 17 symptoms of PTSD are:

1. Agitation

2. Nervousness & Anxiety

3. Problems with Concentration or Thinking

4. Problems with Memory

5. Headaches

6. Depression & Crying Spells

7. Suicidal Thoughts or Attempts

8.Mood Swings

9. Obsessive-Compulsive Tendencies

10. Panic Episodes

11. Paranoia

12. Shakiness

13. Substance Abuse

14. Flashbacks

15. Hypervigilance

16. Nightmares

17. Sleep Disturbances

Suzanne, you have a tool that you utilize called the Freeing Questions Tool. What is this and how does it work?

Always happy to share it. You know that self-talk in your head… “Why am I so broke? Why do I feel so awful? Why can’t I get rid of this problem? Why does (this negative thing) keep happening to me?” All versions of, “Why am I so messed up?” You might notice that all of these questions dead end in a problem or limitation. Your responsive neurology will keep wiring for problems every time you ask these questions. It is just doing the job you are giving it to do. You can start to ask yourself new questions like, “Why do I feel so happy, peaceful and calm?” “Why am I able to attract money so effortlessly now?” “Why is my body healing so miraculously?” You can easily see/feel that these questions help you wire yourself for solutions, not problems. You can use other creative questions to turn the bus around! I have to remind myself to do this. (Laughter.) Recently I had a painful bout of bursitis in my right shoulder. I tried several things but it actually disappeared when I started asking, “Why is my shoulder moving so freely now?” No kidding. Sometimes even I have to remember the tools.

In your experience of working with clients, who are the clients best suited to work with you?

We have worked with all age groups, from small children who have been traumatized to an 88-year-old veteran. We work with many issues in anyone who is deeply ready to shift a limiting pattern. Life stuckness can take many forms. The reality is that we are co-partnering with people for that other thing that wants to come in, a life’s work, a healing, an idea, joy and fulfillment in a new stage of life. Wellness is a consciousness of receptivity and positivism. Of HOPE. That is the deeper result of what we do.

Suzanne, what are your goals as a healing practitioner?

To hold a space for motivated clients to create the greatest amount of change possible in a way that is gentle and grounded. I also enjoy helping them process the emotional content that may come up. I want to apply the technology and tools in the most skillful manner AND also know that healing depends on the motivation and actions of clients. I am actually not the “healer;” they have their own inner healer and my goal is to help them activate that as efficiently as possible.

Suzanne, what do you enjoy most about working with your clients?

I enjoy laughing with them and watching them see their lives blossom after a period of difficulty or reduced function. This can happen fairly quickly. There is nothing like sharing their successes. I love seeing them get back into life and into their gifts. I have told this story before, but I met a client a few years back. He was stuck because of some serious injuries that he sustained as an EMT. He had been disabled and in a wheelchair for some time. When I met him he was using walking sticks. He also had a diagnosis of MS. He has gotten so much better that it is remarkable to see. One day he called me up and told me he had a question for me, “Do you remember seeing me have any facial tics?” I said, “No, I do not remember that.” He started laughing, and said, “That is because they went away on the FIRST session!” We laughed and laughed. He had experienced the ticks since he was a child. When they disappeared, neither of us noticed. It has been a process, but he has moved forward with his life in amazing ways. He is a remarkable person and continues to inspire us.  Recently a gentleman’s lack of feeling in his feet went away in the first session. The quick results are always fun, but so is the more gradual increase in function, happiness and the ability to bounce back from a setback or upset.

Is there any particular feedback that is common for you to receive from your clientele?

People usually tell us that they have tried many things and that they are so glad they worked with us. The greatest feedback is something like “I am getting married!” from someone who had crippling social anxiety and could not date. “I opened my non-profit 501c3 to save the bees!” from someone who was disabled. An insomnia sufferer saying, “I sleep through the night now.” “I am finally off that drug I was taking for pain!” “I can move with much greater ease.” “My vertigo is mostly gone.” “I am dating again!” “I haven’t had a migraine since I cannot remember!” “My driving phobia does not bother me anymore!” “I was able to get out of a toxic relationship.” “My wife and I are patching things up now!” “My blood pressure is normal.” “I feel calmer in situations that used to stress me.” “My kid is much more well-adjusted and confident in school now. He is barely acting like he is on the spectrum.” You can see more of our testimonials on the Ashland LocalsGuide website.

In reflection on your own life, what has been some of the best advice you try to remember on a regular basis?

One action can equal a thousand words. Expect miracles. Trust God and love people.

What are you doing NOW that is inspiring you the most?

We are still excited about results with addiction and with people who have post-stroke muscle weakness and spasticity. Also with neuropathy, numbness, and tingling in their legs/arms from injury etc. We are very excited about this as someone who has stopped progressing with other interventions may experience a notable improvement in function. IASIS MCN device is indicated for relaxation training and muscle reeducation. If you or someone you know is experiencing post-stroke or post-injury muscle weakness and/or spasticity, numbness, or tingling, please call us at the number below.

Can you please share some recent testimonials with us?

It would be our pleasure, Shields. Many of these people are continuing to improve as they move towards completion of their treatment. Also, we must not underestimate the improvement that continues to happen as our clients get back into life and start doing things that they enjoy! You can build on your success.

Toxic Shame, Emotional and Relationship Issues

“After my first treatment with Suzanne, I noticed a positive change. The crushing anxiety I would feel after an intense argument with my wife was no longer there. Sure, I still feel some anxiety from time to time, but the intensity is so low and my ability to let it go has improved greatly. For instance, a blow up used to ruin a whole day or multiple days. Now I am able to let feelings go almost as quickly as they come up. Suzanne has been teaching me how to “let go” during my sessions.

The biggest change I have noticed is that my core feelings of “not being good enough, not being able to change, the world is out to get me, people don’t care, etc.,” are not governing my reality anymore. I am not ashamed any more. I am not playing the victim. I have much less guilt and regret. The Microcurrent Neurofeedback has allowed my brain to be more plastic and more adaptive. I see 360 degrees instead of a narrow hallway of my reactions and pain. My perspective about reality has shifted and the more I learn to let go of the things that are not serving me, the more content I feel. I feel more than hopeful.”

Anonymous

(6 Sessions, continuing to improve)

Non-positional Vertigo and Stress

“I was skeptical about the possible benefits of Microcurrent Neurofeedback. But having suffered from non-positional vertigo for years I decided to try it. I had reached a “plateau” in my treatments and hoped that the Neurofeedback would get me over the “hump.” I am glad I tried it because it DID help get me over the hump. It also decreased the bouts and duration of vertigo that I now experience. If you are suffering from a chronic or short-term ailment, I’d recommend that you give Suzanne and her wonderful “touch” and treatment a try.”

Miyo Ishihara, Ashland, OR (15 Sessions)

Vascular Healing

“I tagged along to a Neurofeedback session that my husband was having with Suzanne. While she was treating him, she asked me if I wanted to get up on the PEMF mat that she has in her office. As she later told me, the session lasted exactly 8 minutes. It took me over a week of trying to figure out why my lower left leg and foot, that had looked dark and bruised with damaged veins for decades, looked SO MUCH Better. It is nowhere near like it was. The only thing I had done differently was that tiny session. My foot continued to improve. The dark purple color, swelling and edema are much reduced. What a difference! It was a definite testimony to the machine that was used to bring healing to my veins. She has the before and after pictures to prove it.”

Lorene Graham, Medford (1 session)

Please note, we rent BEMER PEMF machines so that people can use them at home. We also provide in-office sessions.

Neurofeedback and Post-Covid

“I am a 76 year old woman just about halfway through my course of IASIS treatment. It might be helpful to explain my reasons for trying neurofeedback as I’m hoping to encourage others to investigate and finally use this treatment.

I had COVID twice last year (2022) and I experienced extensive physical and emotional damage. My body was hurting on so many levels. My immune system was seriously compromised and I was unable to return to (what was) an active and well-rounded lifestyle. I gradually returned to a life with a reasonable amount of physical activity – but was stuck with depression and unbearable anxiety. When I met Suzanne and learned a little about the IASIS Neurofeedback system, I was impressed with the number of people who had their lives back. I wanted to be one of those people.

CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE —->

I’m impressed with how much better I feel on so many levels. I’ve experienced much more joy; I have hope; my cognition has improved; I’m motivated to return to activities I just didn’t have the energy to pursue; my thinking has become more positive; my attitude has changed… that “cloud of doom” has lifted and I’m encouraged to think about the future with anticipation. Also, my relationship with my husband is much improved and even he has noticed that I am more joyful and easily going with the flow. I do not need to control everything anymore!

I’m very grateful for the changes I’ve already seen in my life. I hope my words of encouragement will motivate others to give this treatment a try.”

S.M., Medford (6 sessions)

Addiction and Trauma

“For the last couple years I have struggled with a heroin addiction. It began as a way to self-medicate and numb the trauma I had both as a child and as an adult. My brain started to trick me into thinking that the only way I could feel normal was to use. In reality, it was keeping me sick by making me into a recluse. It had been so long since I even knew what normal felt like or had experienced normal sleep, appetite and deep friendships. Even a genuine relationship with my beautiful wife. I felt disembodied, as if I were a marionette being pulled along by strings. Like most of my relatives, I felt helpless to my genetic predisposition toward addiction, although it manifested in them with alcohol. That is until Suzanne encouraged me to try IASIS Neurofeedback.

I went into my sessions about five days sober from opiates and I felt my body and mind were open and ready to be healed. After just my first session, my natural energy, appetite and normal sleep had come back full force. Soon after my second session, I started to feel and experience my nervous system and my body becoming more aligned. I was feeling my body and having control over my choices. My cravings for self-medication dropped to almost zero. This was the 2nd session!

As of today, I have completed 4 sessions and am 16 days sober. The tangible results seem to double every day. Things like productivity, energy, sleep, mood and my resilience over negative emotions. The positive change is baffling. My self-talk is more positive than ever. I feel determined and organized. Paired with therapy, exercise, and a healthy, whole foods diet, this treatment has changed my life for the better, and I look forward to more sessions and a life free from addiction and freedom from being frozen in my trauma.”

S.B., Phoenix, 8-18-23

UPDATE: Still sober on 2-18-24! We are very happy for him and his family.

Yes, I’m still sober. It will be 7 months on the 2nd of March. I was on heroin for about 2 years on and off with a couple weeks sober here and there. But before that I was sober for a year and a half. And before that it was similar.  On and off, with a couple months clean here and there. This is the longest I’ve gone with nothing. No alcohol, no cigarettes, no pills or anything since I first started using drugs.

Things are great. I’ve been doing Jiu-Jitsu now for almost 7 months non-stop. I go to the gym every day. I’ve gained 15 lbs of muscle. I’m a lot more disciplined and I have so much peace. My house is in order. Things are clean and organized. I play music all the time. My relationships are better and I’m a manger at my job.  It’s been beyond words.

My life has completely changed, I’ve been able to stay in contact with people. I love my friends and family. I’ve been able to save money. We have a good working vehicle, my relationship with my wife is better than it’s ever been and she is pregnant. God is good and I can’t put into words how awesome it is.  S.B., Phoenix, 02-21-24

Trauma from the Fires

“My emotional and physical life have been altered by the Almeda fire and a very negative relationship. I would cry every day (for no reason, I thought) and be depressed, lacking that precious spice for life. I had talk therapy with no obvious results. Then I decided to try the Iasis Neurofeedback method.

I must admit that I was apprehensive and doubtful before starting but I attended the 12 sessions by trusting the process…

The Iasis Neurofeedback has re-balanced my nervous system. I don’t stress anymore about everything, but most important to me, I don’t cry anymore and I have regained my zest for life and my creative self.

As I said, I trusted the process, but Suzanne’s understanding, knowledge and caring presence have been a tremendous plus to the scientific method. I appreciated the multiple sharings and numerous contacts that she gave me. Thank you Suzanne, for your loving and caring presence during the sessions!”

J.L., Phoenix (80+ years old, 12 sessions)

Post-Stroke Muscular Function

“Several years ago I was severely disabled by a stroke. I had been seeing an Osteopath as part of my recovery. He has helped me greatly but also I have learned there are muscles that are ostensibly “dead,” that must come back for me to regain abilities. A friend recommended that I do IASIS Neurofeedback to see if it could help me with these “missing in action” muscles. I decided to give it a shot. After receiving several IASIS sessions I went back to my Osteopath who said that my leg muscles were “alive” and engaged in a way now that I could use them and bring back abilities that had completely disappeared. I am very grateful for this profound change.”

LB, Ashland Oregon

First Responder Injury

“I was injured as a firefighter in a 40 foot fall, I was left with extreme neuropathy and numbness in my legs leaving me too weak to walk without assistance. Physical therapy and exercise gave me a stronger core, but did not help in engaging the muscles and nerves that were still weak, even after years of physical therapy. I began IASIS a year ago to help treat the nerve pain I was experiencing, with amazing results. Just this last week, I was given IASIS therapy to help me regain leg movement and relieve the neuropathy that remained. The results were immediate and profound in their effectiveness. Numbness was relieved and motor control of my leg muscles became noticeably better after a single session. I can now see a path to full function of my legs and a return to walking after 20 years of searching for answers. I played with the dog today. I can’t wait for follow-up treatment.”

Charles Berg, Medford, 6/18/22

Childhood Trauma

“This summer, when I was suffering from a serious emotional episode of triggered past trauma, Suzanne and her IASIS Technology helped me tremendously! Between her skills with IASIS as well as a number of complementary modalities and her beautiful, loving heart, I have healed/re-patterned old wounds and recovered a better quality of life, sleep and peace of mind. I will be forever grateful.”

Francesca R., Talent

Neuropathy

I recently completed a series of sessions using IASIS Technologies with Suzanne Mark.  While I experienced improvement in a number of areas, I was amazed at what happened with the peripheral neuropathy in my feet. After the very first session, I could feel my feet for the first time in years!  This was not on my list, but I was delighted.  Throughout my treatment Suzanne was very supportive and committed to my journey towards wellness.

Jerry Bryan, Ashland

Suzanne, are you currently accepting new clients and if so what is the best way for people to step forward in beginning to work with you?

Yes, we are always accepting clients because people graduate from our programs with favorable results. I suggest a phone call so that we can connect more deeply about your unique goals and how we may nurture them with the tools we use at Ashland Neurofeedback. My number is (541) 631-8757. Thank you for having us in the LocalsGuide, Shields. We love LocalsGuide and always wish you well in your world travels and creative endeavors.

It makes us very happy to see people like those above, getting back into the beautiful adventure of life. If you are ready for change, please contact Suzanne Mark at (541) 631-8757.

For more testimonials and information, please go to: ashlandneuro.com or ashland.oregon.localsguide.com and search, Ashland Neurofeedback

Se habla Español. Estamos aquí para servirles. Por favor, llame al (541) 631-8757.

“You will not be set free to fly and then be allowed to fall.”  ~ Love Without End

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