Eye Movement Desensitization
What is EMDR?
EMDR is the acronym for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. EMDR was developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro in 1987, after experiencing relief from her own painful memories as she walked in the woods. She was moving her eyes from side to side as she thought about some events and the eye movements seem to help.
When Shapiro recalled her traumatic memories, her eye movements appeared to correspond with the memories becoming less and less bothersome. She began to study the method and eventually did case studies and clinical research on the technique.
Our brains have a natural way to recover from traumatic memories and events. While many times traumatic experiences can be managed and resolved spontaneously, they may not be processed without help. Stress responses are part of our natural fight, flight, or freeze instincts.
When distress from a disturbing event remains, the upsetting images, thoughts, and emotions may create feelings of overwhelm, of being back in that moment, or of being “frozen in time.”
EMDR therapy helps the brain process these memories, and allows normal healing to resume. The experience is still remembered, but the fight, flight, or freeze response from the original event is resolved.” EMDRIA.org
How Does EMDR Work?
EMDR therapy does not require talking in detail about the distressing issue, or homework between sessions.
EMDR therapy is designed to resolve unprocessed traumatic memories.
Part of the therapy includes alternating eye movements, sounds, or taps. For many clients, EMDR therapy can be completed in fewer sessions than other psychotherapies. EMDRIA.org
If you are already working with your own therapist and don't want to make a change to engage in EMDR< you don't have to! We offer Adjunctive EMDR Collaboration for clients to add to their current therapy progress. We will collaborate with your current therapist for best results.
When you find yourself "stuck" in traditional talk therapy, you may benefit from Adjunct EMDR. Adjunct EMDR is not a replacement for your primary therapy. Rather, it is a goal-specific treatment to help initiate change around an identified memory or intrusive thought. In Adjunct EMDr targeted thoughts do not have to be tied to a highly traumatic memory. In the Assessment appointment, we work to identify the underlying memories or relationship dynamics that "birthed" this pattern of thinking. Treatment is often brief and is most effective in the EMDR Intensive Program. The success of your treatment depends on clearly defined goals that we create in collaboration.
Adjunctive EMDR is often covered by insurance, but please note that insurance will often not cover two therapy appointments on the same day. Private pay options are available for those not wanting to use insurance or wanting longer session times than your insurance may allow.
If you want to get started with Adjunctive EMDR treatment schedule your free 15 minute consultation.