Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR)

*Information provided by the Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing International Association (EMDRIA)

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an extensively researched, effective psychotherapy method proven to help people recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and panic disorders.

According to EMDR Institute, Inc. EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a psychotherapy that enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences.  Repeated studies show that by using EMDR therapy people can experience the benefits of psychotherapy that once took years to make a difference. It is widely assumed that severe emotional pain requires a long time to heal.  EMDR therapy shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma much as the body recovers from physical trauma.  When you cut 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 demonstrates that a similar sequence of events occurs with mental processes.  The brain’s information processing system naturally moves toward mental health.  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.  Using the detailed protocols and procedures learned in EMDR therapy training sessions, clinicians help clients activate their natural healing processes.

How is EMDR different than other therapy?

EMDR therapy does not require talking in detail about the distressing issue or
completing homework between sessions. EMDR therapy, rather than focusing on changing the
emotions, thoughts, or behaviors resulting from the distressing issue, allows the brain to
resume its natural healing process.

EMDR therapy is designed to resolve unprocessed traumatic memories in the brain. For
many clients, EMDR therapy can be completed in fewer sessions than other
psychotherapies.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an extensively researched, effective psychotherapy method proven to help people recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and panic disorders.Insert how EMDR works. *From EMDRIA.org

Who can benefit from EMDR therapy?

EMDR therapy helps children and adults of all ages. Therapists use EMDR therapy to address a wide range of challenges:

  • Anxiety, panic attacks, and phobias
  • Chronic Illness and medical issues
  • Depression and bipolar disorders
  • Dissociative disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • PTSD and other trauma and stress-related issues
  • Grief and loss
  • Pain
  • Performance anxiety
  • Personality disorders
  • Sexual assault
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Substance abuse and addiction
  • Violence and abuse

What is EMDR therapy like?

After the therapist and client agree that EMDR therapy is a good fit, the client will work through the eight phases of EMDR therapy with their therapist.

Attention will be given to a negative image, belief, and body feeling related to this event, and then to a positive belief that would indicate the issue was resolved.

A typical EMDR therapy session lasts from 60-90 minutes. EMDR therapy may be used within a standard talking therapy, as an adjunctive therapy with a separate therapist, or as a treatment all by itself.

Additional Resources

Visit EMDRIA.org to learn more about the 8 phases of EMDR therapy and more information about what to expect.

Reach out to learn more.
Contact Us