What is EMDR?

EMDR is an acronym for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It’s a powerful psychotherapy that facilitates healing from emotional distress that often stems from disturbing or traumatic life experiences. For this reason it can be a valuable tool in treating trauma, working through traumatic memories and improving mental health.

EMDR Therapy can help you overcome feelings of anxiety, depression, phobias, and most notably PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) by addressing the root causes of your these feelings and helping you to process and integrate traumatic memories.

Where did EMDR Therapy Come From?

EMDR Therapy is a therapeutic approach that was first introduced in the 1980s by psychologist Francine Shapiro. Shapiro developed the therapy, based on the idea that traumatic experiences can cause negative thoughts, feelings, and behaviours to become stuck in the brain, leading to long-term psychological issues.

What Does EMDR Involve?

EMDR therapy provides a safe space for the processing of troublesome emotional states. The therapy encourages the brief focus on the memory of a trauma, all the while experiencing the bilateral stimulation of their eyes (eye movement).

It involves a range of phases, each of which has a specific function that relates to three time periods: the past, the present and the future.

EMDR Therapy works by using eye movements to help the brain process and integrate traumatic memories. This form of eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing can help individuals overcome negative feelings and beliefs associated with past traumas and improve their overall mental health and well-being.

The EMDR Therapy Process

In the first session, a thorough history will be taken. This helps the therapist understand the basic needs and targets of the client, which gives space for the development of specific skill sets and behaviours to be developed from the outset. EMDR therapy often begins with tuning into childhood events at the beginning, which helps clients to begin gaining valuable insights into the patterns and symptoms they are experiencing.

Next, the therapist will help the clients develop an array of methods that they can use to handle emotional distress. From imagery, to stress-reduction techniques and everything in between.

What Does Science Say About EMDR?

Repeated studies have shown that clients of EMDR can experience instances of healing that are traditionally only accessed through years of psychotherapy. Over 30 controlled studies have shown that 84% – 90% of single-trauma victims no longer have any symptoms of PTSD after three 90-minute sessions.

Using EMDR in Counselling

Trauma work is always guided by you, the client. You have complete control over the speed and direction of any work we do together. My first priority is to make sure you feel in control and you feel safe.  We will work together using some talk therapy and some EMDR.

David been counselling for more than 20 years.  He is undertaken training in EMDR in accord with the Curriculum by EMDR International Association and Accredited by EMDR Australia Association