EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)
What can I expect?
Eye movements (or other bilateral stimulation) are used during the session. After the clinician has determined which memory to target first, they ask the client to hold different aspects of that event or thought in mind and to use their eyes to track the therapist’s hand as it moves back and forth across the client’s field of vision. Sets of eye movements are continued until the memory becomes less disturbing. Eventually the client’s memory shifts to adaptive thoughts and beliefs; for example, “I did the best that I could.”
The eye movements that occur during this therapy are associate with the biological mechanisms involved during dreaming or Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep which allow internal associations to arise, and the client begins to process the memory and disturbing feelings.
During EMDR therapy the client may experience intense emotions. By the end of the session most people report a significant reduction in distress connected with the memory.
What does it help with?
- Abuse (physical, psychological/emotional, financial, sexual)
- Anger issues
- Anxiety disorders
- Chronic Pain
- Complex trauma and dissociation
- Depressive disorders
- Eating and body dysmorphic disorders
- Emotional distress and dysregulation
- Interpersonal relationship difficulties
- Personality disorders
- Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other trauma related disorders
- Sleep issues