When you experience a stressful event, it can be so overwhelming that your brain gets stuck in that experience. Even if it happened many years ago.
A type of therapy called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing therapy (EMDR) can help you to escape this stressful event and learn to live fully in the present.
EMDR in brief
EMDR helps people to heal from stressful experiences. The idea is that sometimes things get stuck in the brain, and with the help of EMDR, the blockage is removed, and the brain starts to heal.
When I use EMDR, I stimulate your brain’s natural healing system to resolve the stressful experiences. The stressful experiences are resolved because, with the help of EMDR, your brain can finally process those stressful experiences. You are no longer overwhelmed by those experiences.
EMDR in more detail
These are the three parts of your brain that communicate with each other -
In response to a stressful event, your brain tends to tell you to do one of three things –
If your brain has not had a chance to process a stressful event, your brain can get stuck in one of those three responses (fight, flight or freeze).
EMDR involves moving your eyes from left to right, a process similar to REM sleep. If you don’t like this eye movement, we can use ‘tappers’ (a small machine that you hold in your hands and sends subtle pulsing sensations from left to right).
EMDR helps your brain to process those stressful experiences, so they are not stuck in a way that overwhelms you. As a result, you change your beliefs about the event and about yourself. For example –
Before any reprocessing takes place, we will also work hard to identify and strengthen any ground and calming resources, so that you never feel overwhelmed.
I am a member of EMDR International Association, and they have put together a video telling you more about EMDR. Please let me know if you have any questions about this.
Book your free telephone consultation today. Or reach out to ask me any questions.
Chris Warren-Dickins LLB MA LPC
Psychotherapist, (Licensed Professional Counselor), Northern New Jersey
#findatherapist #northernnewjersey #beyondtheblue #mentalhealth
EMDR has been proven to be effective, and here is just some of the evidence –
· American Psychiatric Association. (2004). Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with acute stress disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder. Retrieved from: https://www.psychiatry.org/psychiatrists/practice/clinical-practice-guidelines
· American Psychological Association. (2017). Clinical practice guideline for the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults. Retrieved from: https://www.apa.org/ptsd-guideline/ptsd.pdf
· Department of Veterans Affairs & Department of Defense. (2017). VA/DoD clinical practice guideline for the management of post-traumatic stress disorder and acute stress disorder. The Management of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Work Group. Office of Quality and Performance publication. doi:10Q-CPG/PTSD-04. Retrieved from: https://www.healthquality.va.gov/guidelines/MH/ptsd/
· International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies. (2018). PTSD prevention and treatment guidelines methodology and recommendations. Oakbrook Terrace, IL: ISTSS. Retrieved from: https://www.istss.org/treating-trauma/new-istss-prevention-and-treatment-guidelines.aspx
· National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. (2018). Post-traumatic stress disorder. NICE guideline [NG116]. Retrieved from: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng116
· Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services America. (2012). Comparative effectiveness research series. Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy: An information resource. SAMHSA's National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices.
· The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. (2013). Psychological therapies for chronic post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults. Issue 12. Article no. CD003388. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD003388.pub4. Retrieved from: https://www.cochrane.org/CD003388/DEPRESSN_psychological-therapies-chronic-post-traumatic-stress-disorder-ptsd-adults
· World Health Organization. (2013). Guidelines for the management of conditions specifically related to stress. Geneva: WHO. Retrieved from: https://www.who.int/mental_health/emergencies/stress_guidelines/en/
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