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EMDR Therapy

What is EMDR Therapy?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is a standardized protocol that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma/PTSD. EMDR is a treatment within the Adaptive Information Processing model which theorizes that the brain can heal itself from trauma with the right tools. EMDR can be effective for very recent frightening situations and past traumatic memories.

I was trained in 1999 by Dr. Francine Shapiro who is the developer of EMDR. She discovered that bilateral stimulation, such as eye movements, worked to desensitize traumatic memories. I'm certified by EMDRIA as an EMDR provider and also utilize the Flash Technique.

How does EMDR Therapy work?

EMDR therapy is effective both in-person and virtually, through telehealth. Repeated bilateral stimulation activates opposite sides of the brain to process negative memories. Therapists can use different ways to increase dual awareness and attention such as tapping, auditory tones and eye movements from side to side or horizontally. These eye movements mimic the period of sleep referred to as rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.

EMDR seems to help the brain reprocess the trapped memories in a way that allows normal information processing to follow. The memories are not lost but will feel less intense. EMDR can help clients uncover and process beliefs that developed as the result of relational traumas, childhood abuse and/or neglect. 

For a more detailed explanation please visit the EMDR Institute, Inc or EMDRIA.

What conditions can benefit from EMDR Therapy?

Any distressing emotions, negative thoughts or unpleasant bodily sensations can by targeted with EMDR's protocol. 

While everyone is unique and results cannot be guaranteed, EMDR has been proven useful for the treatment of PTSD and the following conditions:

  • Panic Attacks
  • Complicated Grief
  • Recent traumatic situations including accidents
  • Dissociative Disorders
  • Disturbing Memories
  • Phobias
  • Pain Disorders
  • Performance Anxiety
  • Stress Reduction
  • Sexual and/or Physical Abuse in Childhood
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorders
  • Personality Disorders