NeuroSky Mindwave Mobile Headset 2 as an Intervention for Reduction of Stress and Anxiety Measured with Pulse Rate Variability

Habshi Alkaf, Ahsan Khandoker, HF Jelinek
Khalifa University


Aim: NeuroSky Mindwave Mobile headset 2 (MMH2) is an EEG-based biofeedback device that can be used to assist in relaxation by providing users feedback on their level of relaxation. In this study, we aimed to assess the effect of using MMH2 on pulse rate variability (PRV) as a measure of relaxation in addition to the in-App real-time data. The Brainwave Visualizer application was used to determine the influence MMH2 has on relaxation levels.

Methods: Seven participants were recruited through media advertisement and provided information about the study once they contacted the university. All participants provided informed consent following an information session. Participants were required to use the Brainwave Visualizer application as part of the NeuroSky suite for relaxation for 10 minutes. Pulse rate variability (PRV) of each participant was determined from the pulse recorded via an infrared sensor at the index finger before and after use of the MMH2. Results such as the average value of the inter-pulse intervals, standard deviation, root mean square of the successive differences, very low frequency power, low frequency power, high frequency power, and the low frequency to high frequency ratio were extracted. The ProComp5 Infinity System with BioGraph Infinity Software was combined with the Physiology Suite (Thought Technology Inc, Canada) to record and analyze the pulse rate using Kubios Software. Biosignals were initially preprocessed to remove artifacts and resampled at 8Hz for time and frequency domain analysis using purpose written Matlab software.

Results: The outcome of the results showed a decrease in the stress score. RMSSD decreased from pre-MMH2 to Post-MMH2 (4.6±5.9; 2.9±0.9) whilst the Kubios Stress Index decreased as well (0.74±1.5; 0.44±1.1) calculated from the mean PR, Baevsky’s Stress Index and SD2%.

Conclusion: MMH2 can be used to help reduce stress and anxiety levels, making it a potentially essential tool for home use.