What is EMDR Therapy?
EMDR therapy shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma. For example, if you get a cut on your hand, your body works to close the wound. If a foreign object or repeated injury irritates the wound, it festers and causes pain. Once the block is removed, healing resumes.
EMDR therapy shows that a similar sequence of events occurs with mental processes. The brain’s information processing system naturally moves toward mental health. In other words, as humans, we will bend towards healing. If the system is blocked or imbalanced by the impact of a disturbing event, the emotional wound festers and can cause intense suffering. Once the block is removed, healing resumes.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma. It is also proven to be more effective than Prozac!
How does EMDR work?
EMDR therapy uses a technique called bilateral stimulation (BLS) to repeatedly activate opposite sides of the brain. Therapists often use eye movements or tapping to facilitate the bilateral stimulation.
The eye movements used mimic the period of sleep referred to as rapid eye movement or REM sleep, and this portion of sleep is frequently considered to be the time when the mind processes the recent events in the person’s life.
EMDR seems to help the brain reprocess the trapped memories is such a way that normal information processing is resumed. Therapists often use EMDR to help clients uncover and process beliefs that developed as the result of relational traumas, or childhood abuse and/or neglect. For a more detailed explanation please visit EMDR Institute, Inc.
What does EMDR help?
EMDR had been originally established as helpful for PTSD, although it’s been proven useful for treatment in the following conditions:
- Panic Attacks
- Anxiety attacks
- Complex Trauma
- Complicated Grief
- Dissociative Orders
- Disturbing Memories
- Pain Disorders
- Performance Anxiety
- Stress Reduction
- Sexual and/or Physical Abuse
- Body Dysmorphic Disorders
- Personality Disorders
None of the above symptoms or experiences fit you? Do you experience distressing emotions that appear to you, and perhaps to others, to be excessive given the current situation? Do you tend to be highly reactive to certain triggers? Is there one or more dysfunctional belief that you believe about yourself that on an intellectual level you know is not true?
If so, you may still be a good candidate for EMDR therapy. Feel free to reach out with any questions you might have!