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  • Writer's pictureAlana

What is EMDR?

One exciting new therapy technique that we utilize here at Authentic Hope is EMDR. You may have heard about it, and may be wondering if it’s the right option for you.

EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. EMDR therapy involves bilateral stimulation (usually eye movements, but can also be light tapping) that helps unblock the brain’s ability to process and heal from a traumatic event or emotional wound.

During normal events of your day, your brain easily processes and files away events and memories. However, when a traumatic event happens to you, your brain may react to the trauma and not process and store the event correctly. This can cause you to feel stuck or trapped by the event.

On top of that, newer experiences can add to the trauma, causing you to feel it over and over again, and that makes the memories of the event even stronger in your brain. Sights, sounds, and smells can be triggers. You become unable to control your reactions.

EMDR can help your brain reprocess these stuck memories. Reprocessing them takes the power away from the memories, and lets you change your emotional reaction to them.

Who is EMDR for?

EMDR was originally designed to help alleviate distress associated with traumatic memories. Someone with PTSD, sexual assault survivors, people with phobias, eating disorders, and car accident survivors may benefit from EMDR. Anyone with a traumatic event that they are having a hard time moving on from may want to see if EMDR is right for them.

Sometimes traditional talk therapy can be difficult for people with trauma, having to relive and speak of events that are hard to put into words. EMDR doesn’t require talking in detail, it instead works on changing thoughts, emotions, and behaviors by holding the memory in your head. It can also be quick, most people only need a few sessions.

There have been numerous studies on EMDR and it has been shown to be effective. It is safe for adults, teens, and children. If this is something that speaks to you, please contact us for more information.


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