Selling hope – Company pushes brain-balancing program for learning disabilities; evidence lacking

Sep 6, 2015 by


The fast-growing Brain Balance Achievement Centers claims its $5,000 program can help correct a brain imbalance that the company says causes many learning disabilities. Experts say there’s no strong evidence to back up those claims.

Roxanne Carlson vividly remembers the shock she felt three years ago when a psychologist said her son Levi had issues he might never overcome. He’d need to get a job coach, the psychologist told her, and may even have to spend his life on government disability.

“We were mortified,” she said in her home in Marinette. “We were like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding. This is the answer we’re getting?'”

Roxanne and Perry Carlson had known for five years — ever since they adopted Levi, then 10, and his brother Anthony from the Philippines — that Levi had problems. He was behind many of his peers, academically and socially. He had trouble returning affection, couldn’t process language quickly and struggled just to make conversation.

But after five years of frustration during which school administrators were unable to help and medical professionals seemed stumped, the Carlsons weren’t about to give up. “God did not create him for that,” Roxanne said. “Perry and I were both like, ‘That’s just not happening. We will find another avenue.'”

So on the advice of a friend, they looked into the Brain Balance Achievement Centers location in Mequon, part of a national franchise operation that has nearly 80 sites across the country. It claims its $5,000 three-month, medication-free program can help children like Levi by treating an imbalance in the brain, which the company contends — contrary to the opinions of multiple experts — causes a plethora of learning disabilities including attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Asperger’s syndrome, dyslexia and Tourette’s syndrome.

Initially, the center also claimed it could treat the full range of autism spectrum disorders but has since backed away from that.

Source: Selling hope – Company pushes brain-balancing program for learning disabilities; evidence lacking

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