DIY tDCS Start Here


New to DIYtDCS? This is the ‘start here’ collection of articles and posts.

  1. Become a tDCS expert in only a few hours! Davis tDCS Summit 9/5/13.
  2. Marom Bikson & Peter Toshev ‘Your Electric Pharmacy‘ (excellent overview/intro).
  3. Marom Bikson Presentation on State of the Art tDCS 8/13.
  4. My podcast interviews – deep dives into tDCS with key players.
  5. tDCS SubReddit is where the action is. Now with tDCS FAQ!
  6. An ‘Open tDCS’ project.
  7. johnboy6785’s Off-the-shelf tDCS setup with links (Reddit)
  8. Dr. Brent Williams’ DIY device and protocol.
  9. Zap your brain into the zone: Fast track to pure focus
  10. Better Living Through Electrochemistry
  11. Clinical tDCS trials seek volunteers. All. Search. (Example: “tDCS AND Los Angeles”)
  12. Go deep! ATA at Brmlab continues to develop his tDCS page.
  13. Neuroscience: Brain buzz Nature Magazine
  14. DLPFC / F3 Locator (you’ll need a tape measure with Centimeters)
  15. Searchable database of tDCS articles from
  16. 10–20 international system

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Transcranial stimulation of the developing brain: a plea for extreme caution | Frontiers in Human Neuroscience

I will focus on the key unknowns in brain stimulation research:
1. The unknown effects of stimulation;
2. The unknown side-effects of stimulation;
3. The lack of clear dosing guidelines;
4. The lack of translational studies from adults to children.
I will set out these “known unknowns” in translating our knowledge about TMS and tDCS effects to clinical pediatric applications, and touch on the practical and ethical barriers to their widespread usage.

via Frontiers | Transcranial stimulation of the developing brain: a plea for extreme caution | Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.

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Did tDCS give me dyslexia? : r/tDCS

I have always excelled at learning languages, currently I am fluent in English my native tongue , French, German and Spanish. Ever since I was a little kid I found it fascinating to learn new, complex and rare words and spelling them out. I had this almost 6th sense for their structure. This applied to every language that I tried to learn.I started tDCS 2 months ago and did the common fp2 f3 montage. Since then I have had real trouble with spelling words, I find myself – for the first time in my life – having to google how to spell even the most simple and everyday words. It’s excruciatingly frustrating and saddening. I was hoping for a career in language and writing, but that dream seems bleak now.

via Did tDCS give me dyslexia? : tDCS.

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DIY devices jolt brain, improve function – The Columbia Chronicle

Wood said he uses tDCS while playing improvisational jazz piano and the stimulation helps to increase his overall focus while playing.

“The first time I tried it, I immediately noticed an effect,” Wood said. “You get a light that blinks in the corner of your eyes, [which is] just the exciting of the optical nerves, and I also felt a metallic feeling in the back of my mouth.”

via DIY devices jolt brain, improve function – The Columbia Chronicle: Health & Tech.

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Neuroscientists Battle Furiously Over Jennifer Aniston | NPR

For me this insight (that Dr Fried observed a specific memory attached to a single neuron spike) suggests the question: What about smaller electrodes? Current would have to be reduced to match the proven safety of larger electrode/currency-densities, but if a memory can associate to a single neuron perhaps there are novel hypotheses to be explored using tDCS.

Scientists can, as Dr. Fried did, see a single neuron spiking. There are fancy machines, fMRI scans, that can take fuzzy pictures of whole neighborhoods of hundreds of thousands of neurons being active. But if we want to see a memory of Jennifer Aniston forming in my head, first as two, then four, then ten, then 50, then 100, then 1,000 neurons flashing messages to each other forming a pattern — that we can’t see. We haven’t the tools.

The way to do it, says Seung in his new book Connectome is we should build a brain map. This map should let us see each and every neuron in a bit of my brain, the bigger the neighborhood, the more we will see. One day Seung would like to map an entire human brain, that’s 80 billion neurons with roughly a 100 trillion connections between them.

via Neuroscientists Battle Furiously Over Jennifer Aniston : Krulwich Wonders… : NPR.
See Also: Memories and Volition – Insights from Single Neuron Recordings in the Human Brain Itzhak Fried

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Study set for brain stimulation device to help restore memory – The Washington Post

Not tDCS but fascinating…

Medtronic [a medical device manufacturer] will be developing a 256-channel brain stimulator, not only to stimulate but to record and analyze brain activity and [to] try to modify and synthesize it within the brain.

The ultimate goal is to send patients with memory disorders home with a device implanted into their brain to improve their memory.

How will the study work?

The 256-channel device will be far more than a brain stimulator. It will be an intelligent device that continuously monitors brain function for signals that indicate how well our memory system is operating. As it tracks these signals, in real time, it will use mathematical models of brain function to determine whether and how to stimulate at each of these locations. By cycling very rapidly between recording, analyzing and stimulating, it will try to continuously maintain good memory function in patients with neurological injury or disease.

via Study set for brain stimulation device to help restore memory – The Washington Post.

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Wearable for state-of-mind shift set for 2015 |

Their (Thync) technology is about proprietary neurosignaling waveforms that target neural pathways via a triad: BRAIN: prefrontal and frontoparietal brain regions; NERVES: sensory fibers of cranial nerves; and MUSCLE: neuromuscular fibers, according to their site. Fundamentally, this is, in the words of CNN’s Heather Kelly, “a portable headset that will offer three settings to start: energy, relaxation and focus.” Isy Goldwasser, the company CEO, said in CNN, “For some people it would be their third cup of coffee, for some people it would be their afternoon nap.” Cofounder and CSO Jamie Tyler, a professor at Arizona State University, said in MIT Technology Review that the device can produce “a calming effect more potent than drinking a couple of beers or taking Benadryl. “As for the energizing effect, Bullis said the “short-lived” energizing effect “feels a little like drinking a can of Red Bull.”

via Wearable for state-of-mind shift set for 2015.

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DIY Brain-Shock Kits Jump Start Users’ Day – ABC News

Leadam, 25, founded The Brain Stimulator, a brain stimulation kit-selling business he started in his mother’s California garage. He said he first heard about tDCS in college, and used it as a learning aid to study for a final.“
I don’t really retain textual-based information that well, so I decided to try out the tDCS device while I read to see if it would help me remember,” he said. “The next day when I went in to take the test, I thought I was going to fail, but it turned out that I got an A. And I actually remember looking at the questions and remembering the concepts down to the very paragraph they were located in the book.”
Such brain stimulation is unregulated and not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but that hasn’t stopped it from going mainstream. Dozens of videos on YouTube show people with their own DIY devices, including video gamers who believe their skills have improved by hooking themselves up to tDCS kits.
Leadam says he sells between 25 and 50 of his $90 brain stimulation devices per day, with his mother, uncle and even his grandmother stepping into his home office to help him meet demand. Although his site includes the warning, “The Brain Stimulator is not a medical device,” and “The results are from our findings and may be incomplete and/or completely wrong! Do not view this data as absolute fact,” Leadam says he sees demand for brain stimulation as only growing.

via DIY Brain-Shock Kits Jump Start Users’ Day – ABC News.

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Dr. Felipe Fregni and Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (2013) | SmartDrugsSmarts

Dr. Felipe Fregni is the director of the Laboratory of Neuromodulation and Center of Clinical Research Training. He is an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School of Neurology and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, and an active clinical researcher and educator. In this episode, Dr. Fregni talks about his research into the use and benefits of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS). Download: mp3

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