Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy, commonly known as EMDR, is one of the most thoroughly researched therapy interventions today. Since 1989 significant numbers of clinical trials show that EMDR is effective and can help a person faster than many other methods. EMDR is best known for its role in treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but its use is expanding to include treatment of many other conditions.
The hidden pain of unresolved trauma history surfaces in daily life as depression, anxiety, addictions and even chronic health conditions. Buried traumas such as bullying, abuse, neglect, abandonment, loss, medical events and accidents can shape our beliefs, emotions and behaviors today.
The good news is that EMDR therapy doesn't require talking in detail about painful trauma history. Instead we gently use specific patterns of eye movements that activate the brain's natural filing system similar to our nightly Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep with emotional processing and memory consolidation.
EMDR can effectively change the emotions, thoughts and behaviors that result from a distressing experience. Think of it as moving the memory from an easily triggered current event file in the brain to a history archive file where it has little impact on life today. This natural REM intervention allows your brain to resume a natural healing process which can improve self esteem and empower recovery.
When you're dealing with the aftershocks of a traumatic event, finding an effective therapy is half the battle. Everyone responds to various kinds of therapy differently, so it's important to work closely with your care team to help you find the right option. For some people, EMDR therapy may: