EMDR

EMDR is used to treat trauma. In as little as 6-12 sessions, effects of trauma can be released and processed into appropriate adaptive behavior.

EMDR: Change the Brain, Stop the Pain – treating Trauma

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (better known as “EMDR”) is a revolutionary mental health treatment developed by psychologist Dr Francine Shapiro in the 1990s.

By stimulating the natural action of memory processing through eye movement, EMDR helps people to access and “re-process” their traumatic memories and deep core beliefs.

Backed by extensive scientific research, EMDR is recognized worldwide as effective treatment for emotional disorders. It has been used by millions of people to address PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Grief, Addictions, and other conditions.

Getting to the root of pain: Why EMDR is so effective

Most traditional treatment for emotional disorders, such as pills, drugs and types of talk therapy, seek to numb or reduce the symptoms. With these treatments, even if the symptoms abate for a while, they quickly return when the effects wear off or treatment is stopped.   Quite simply, EMDR is effective because it goes directly to the ROOT CAUSE of the emotional pain, which is the traumatic memory or associated negative self-belief. 

 For example, for someone who experiences recurring symptoms arising from childhood trauma, EMDR helps him to finally resolve the emotional associations of those childhood memories, which have led him to believe he is weak or unlovable. The source of the pain is eliminated - permanently, effectively, and immediately.

When we experience trauma, the brain “freezes” and does not process memories properly, causing these memories to get stuck. 
Similarly, the emotions attached to these memories (which are heightened emotions such as anger, fear, and panic) are not properly processed - and repeatedly replay when triggered. 

Backed by extensive scientific research, EMDR is recognized worldwide and recommended by organizations including:

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs logoWorld Health Organization logoAmerican Psychiatric Association

FAQ About EMDR+

Is EMDR scientifically tested?

EMDR is one of the most well-researched mental health treatments.

Research consistently shows EMDR is:

  • More effective
  • Faster-acting
  • Longer-lasting

than other forms of treatment, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), medication, and traditional talk therapy.

Details of EMDR research studies on combat Veterans, trauma victims, and Depression patients are widely available online. 

Why is it called “Eye Movement”?

EMDR works by stimulating a natural human process known as Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep.

When we sleep, our brain is hard at work processing our recent memories. This is why we dream.

REM sleep is one of the 4 stages of sleep. It is where dreaming occurs most. Research shows that REM sleep plays a leading part in processing memories. By stimulating eye movement that occurs in REM sleep, EMDR lets us to access selected memories and re-process them.

Why is EMDR so effective?

Unlike treatments which just address symptoms, EMDR works directly on the root cause of your pain.

When traumatic events happen, your brain freezes and can’t process memories normally. These unprocessed memories get associated with anger, fear and distress.

Unfortunately, as long as the emotional associations are not broken, you’ll experience the same pain over and over.

EMDR helps to access and process these memories. With re-programming, the root of your pain is eliminated - and you’ll experience true lasting freedom from pain.

How quickly does EMDR work?

EMDR is widely known for producing rapid results. Many people report feeling a difference after their first session!
 
While everyone’s experience is different, many emotional conditions can be effectively treated in just a few sessions.

In reported studies, people suffering from PTSD, single-incident trauma, or Depression experienced significant improvement after just 4 to 12 EMDR sessions.

EMDR patients also reported greater reduction in symptoms, that is deeper effectiveness compared to other treatments

Does EMDR have lasting effect?

Multiple studies show that EMDR has longer-lasting effect than other treatment, including CBT and talk therapy.

Many people who experienced significant reduction, or even full remission, of their symptoms report that they continue to maintain this for an extended period, even after they stop EMDR. These effects often last for 6 months or longer.

EMDR's lasting effect is unsurprising because EMDR attacks the root cause of the emotional pain and permanently eliminates it at its source.

Are there any side effects from EMDR?

EMDR is considered to be safe and has been used by millions of people around the world.

After doing EMDR, some people report experiencing:

  • Heightened emotions or physical sensations
  • Lights appearing brighter for a few minutes after their session
  • Vivid dreams
  • Recall of past memories and trauma 

These non-serious symptoms usually resolve quickly, some after only a few minutes.

What conditions can EMDR be used to treat?

EMDR is suited for emotional disorders that are related to traumatic memories or distressing experiences. This can include childhood trauma, combat, personal tragedy, and relationship or other abuse.

EMDR is widely used to treat Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD), trauma, depression, grief, phobias, social anxiety (agoraphobia) and panic disorders. It has also been used on anger control, attachment, and body image disorders.
EMDR is not advisable for physiologically-based disorders, such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorders.

How many sessions of EMDR will I need?

While this depends on each individual’s history and conditions, EMDR has been consistently shown to deliver lasting results faster than comparable treatments.

Many people report significant improvement – and even full remission of symptoms – after 4 to 12 sessions of EMDR.
In multiple studies single-incident trauma has been shown to be effectively processed within 3 sessions for 80% to 90% of patients.

In another study for PTSD in combat veterans, 77% no longer had PTSD symptoms after 12 sessions.


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