The science of neurostimulation
Your brain is essentially an electrical grid. As you read this, you are producing electrical signals in various brain regions as part of the mental process. PlatoWork operates by creating a mild electrical field that makes it easier for nerve cells (or what we call neurons) to send their natural signals through regions of the brain that enable focus or fuel creative thought.
How it works
Most of us know the feeling of hitting the wall while working; that ideas just do not flow the way they used to. Our brains are wired in such a way, that the harder we work on a problem, the more likely we are to get stuck looking for a solution. The reason for this is, that our brain processes information through associative connections and our memory networks tend to freeze up when we activate the same neural pathways over and over again.
PlatoWork regulates how easy (or difficult) it is for spontaneous thoughts to enter your conscious mind. Imagine you are lying in your bed at night with you eyes closed. Now as the executive functions in the frontal part of your brain prepare to shut down, your mind starts to wander. You are experiencing what is best described as unconstrained, spontaneous cognition, or what scientists call stimulus-independent thoughts. This creative state of mind resembles what the PlatoWork Create mode does: It turns up the generation of spontaneous thoughts and eases their access to your consciousness. Conversely, the Focus mode turns down these thoughts and allows you to work on one thing at the time.
What happens inside the brain?
PlatoWork employs a small amount of electrical energy to your brain in the order of a few milliampere. The mild electrical field makes it easier to reach threshold for the neurons ability to signal. PlatoWork does not cause neurons to signal, but simply makes it easier for them to do so. The neuronal signaling pattern in your brain therefore remains natural and PlatoWork simply clears the way for your own focus or creative thoughts to emerge.
PlatoWork stimulates the left and right side of the prefrontal cortex and precuneus in the back head. The different modes stimulate the individual areas differently to obtain the desired effects.
Can PlatoWork help me?
PlatoWork is designed to optimize the neural activity involved in focus and creative thinking. However, our brains are wired differently and we use them differently depending on our specific situation and needs. This means, that even though the stimulation works for the majority of people, we cannot guarantee a given effect for you. But if you are curious about PlatoWork and would like to test it, we have introduced a 30 day return policy so you can send the product back if you do not experience any interesting and/or useful effects.
Neurostimulation with tDCS has been used within academia for decades and PlatoWork is a safe and CE-approved consumer device. To this date, there has been no reports of serious side effects or irreversible injuries across more than 33.200 sessions (Bikson et al., 2016). Some individuals do report mild, but transient side effects such as skin irritations beneath the electrodes, cognitive discomfort (e.g. moderate fatigue, headache and in rare cases nausea) and a metallic taste in the mouth.
The Science behind PlatoWork
Morten Friis-Olivarius, our PhD in neurobiology explaining the science behind the Create and Focus mode in PlatoWork at TEDx:
- Bourzac, K. (2016). Neurostimulation: Bright sparks. Nature, 531(7592), S6-S8.
- Stagg, C et al. (2018). Physiology of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation. J. ECT.
- Bikson, M et al. (2016). Safety of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation: Evidence Based Update 2016. Brain Stimul, 9(5):641-661.
- Simonsmeier et al. (2018). Electrical brain stimulation (tES) improves learning more than performance. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 84:171-181.