EMDR or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing is a specialized form of therapy that was originally developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro for the treatment of trauma at PTSD. EMDR uses the mind's natural ability to self-heal by activating the coping mechanisms that occur during REM sleep. For over 20 years EMDR has been used to successfully treat a variety of mental health issues
Who can benefit from EMDR?
EMDR can accelerate therapy by resolving the impact of your past traumas and allowing you to live more fully in the present. While EMDR was originally developed for the treatment of trauma, it has successful treated many other issues including:
- Anxiety/Panic attacks
- Grief and Loss
- Sleep problems
- Low self-esteem
EMDR is not, however, appropriate for everyone. The process is rapid, and any disturbing experiences, if they occur at all, last for a comparatively short period of time. Nevertheless, you need to be aware of, and willing to experience, the strong feelings and disturbing thoughts that sometimes occur during sessions.
How long does treatment take?
The full length of treatment will depend on your individual treatment plan that you develop with your therapist. However, positive effects can often be seen after just one or two 90 minute EMDR sessions.
Will I be aware and in control throughout treatment?
Yes. During EMDR treatment, you will remain in control, fully alert and wide-awake. This is not a form of hypnosis and you can stop the process at any time. Throughout the session, the therapist will support and facilitate your own self-healing and intervene as little as possible. Reprocessing is usually experienced as something that happens spontaneously, and new connections and insights are felt to arise quite naturally from within. As a result, most people experience EMDR as being a natural and very empowering therapy.
What evidence is there to support EMDR as an effective and successful treatment?
EMDR is an innovative clinical treatment which has successfully helped over a million individuals.The validity and reliability of EMDR has been established by rigorous research. There are now over nineteen controlled studies into EMDR, making it the most thoroughly researched method used in the treatment of trauma, and The American Psychiatric Association, American Psychological Association, Department of Defense, Veteran’s Administration, insurance companies, and the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies recognize EMDR as an effective treatment for PTSD.
If you would like more information about EMDR, you may visit www.emdria.org or www.emdr.com