EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is an integrative psychotherapy approach that enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences.
We know that when a person is very upset, his or her brain cannot process information as it does ordinarily. One moment can become “frozen in time”; remembering a trauma may feel as bad as going through it the first time. Such memories have a lasting effect on the way a person sees the world and relates to other people. This effect may interfere with his or her ability to lead a happy and healthy life.
EMDR therapy demonstrates that the mind can heal from psychological trauma, much as the body recovers from physical trauma. 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 can cause intense suffering. Once the block is removed, healing resumes. The goal of EMDR therapy is to enable the brain to process completely the experiences that are causing problems, and to include new knowledge that is needed for full health. What is useful to the person from an experience will be learned, and stored with appropriate emotions, so the knowledge can guide the person in positive ways in the future. What is inappropriate will be discarded.
Using detailed EMDR protocols and procedures, clinicians can help clients activate their natural healing processes by accessing and processing disturbing memories and bringing them to an adaptive resolution.
EMDR therapy treats a range of conditions, including:
- Abuse and assaults (psychological, emotional, physical, and sexual)
- Accidents and injuries
- Fears and phobias
- Neglect and abandonment experiences
- Pain management
- Performance anxiety
- Sleep difficulties
- Trauma and post traumatic stress