About EMDR Therapy

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy

As a trained EMDR clinician and active member of EMDRIA, I offer EMDR therapy for clients who could benefit from this specialized form of therapy. EMDR is a highly sought after therapeutic practice that can be done with individuals as well as within groups who have shared similar experiences. EMDR is recognized as an effective treatment by organizations such as the American Psyciatric Association, American Psychological Association, World Health Organization, the Department of Defense, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and other organizations worldwide.

What is EMDR?

EMDR is a form of psychotherapy that helps people recover from distressing life experiences and the symptoms caused by those experiences. When the physical body receives an injury it immediately begins the healing process, but if there is a foreign object stuck in the way or there is repetitive re-injury, the healing process is interrupted and infection can occur. Similarly, the mind's ability to heal itself becomes hindered when the internal processing system becomes blocked or imbalanced due to adverse experiences, which can lead to responses such as anxiety, depression, flashbacks, compulsive behaviors, and other distressing symptoms. EMDR can help remove the blockage so that healing can begin.

How does EMDR work?

Rather than using outside resources to manage pain or distress, EMDR activates a person's own natural healing ability. Using an 8 phase protocol, clinicians who are trained in EMDR will assess the client's readiness and create a treatment plan, help the client develop coping skills for handling emotional distress, and promote healing through bilateral stimulation. Bilateral stimulation is often through eye movements, but can also be done through tapping, alternating auditory sounds, or other sensations. It is suggested that in EMDR, through biological mechanisms associated with Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep, the mind is able to process the memories and distressing emotions naturally and more efficiently. EMDR helps enhance communication between the different parts of the brain that are necessary for optimum functioning.

Who would benefit from EMDR therapy?

EMDR is offered for clients who wish to recover from trauma or other negative experiences including PTSD, anxiety, depression, panic disorders, abandonment, chronic pain, sleep disorders, grief, compulsive behaviors, addiction, and more. EMDR can be effective for clients of all ages. EMDR trained clinicians will assess clients for readiness and "right-fit". Depending on the complexity of the client's experiences, the process of EMDR may take as few as five 90 minute sessions or be ongoing for a few years. Your clinician will collaborate with you to create a personalized treatment plan.

Who can provide EMDR therapy?

EMDR is a known mental health intervention, and as such should only be used by specially trained mental health clinicians. Attempting "do-it-yourself" therapy or being treated by an untrained professional could lead to adverse reactions and is not advised.

The video below, provided courtesy of EMDR International Association, can be helpful in understanding what EMDR is and the benefits of treatment. You can find more information at the EMDRIA website. https://www.emdria.org