Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is an evidence-based form of psychotherapy that helps people to recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and panic disorders.
How does EMDR work? Our brains have a natural way of helping us to recover from difficult events. Have you ever noticed how much better you feel about something once you’ve been able to “sleep on it”? Due to the bilateral stimulation of the brain during the Rapid Eye Movement (REM), stage of the sleep cycle, our brain can process the distress of the previous day and store the experiences as memories of past events. We’re able to discard what was painful and learn from the experience and move on. Unfortunately, there are some events that do not get processed and integrated. Due to the overwhelming nature of the event, our natural coping mechanism become overloaded and our bodies continue to respond to present events as if we are living in the past. EMDR helps the brain to process the memories and allow normal healing to resume.
Therapists use EMDR to address a wide range of challenges including:
As with any of the modalities used to treat trauma, the beginning stages include an assessment that will help to determine if EMDR will be an effective tool for you. Click herefor more information on EMDR.