What is EMDR?
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of integrative psychotherapy for resolving dysfunctionally stored memories so that the painful feelings, emotions, thoughts, and beliefs that stem from those experiences stop having a negative impact on us.
EMDR is an eye movement therapy where the therapist uses bilateral stimulation (BLS). Usually hand movements are used but tapping on the hands (or knees) and sound are also used at times. Because each side of the body is connected to one side of the brain, BLS alternately stimulates one side of the brain and then the other. BLS helps activate the body’s natural information processing system.
This approach is proven to be very beneficial for the treatment of traumas but also for issues like: panic attacks, grief, PTSD, chronic pains, phobias and many more.
EMDR is an appropriate treatment for children of all ages.
How is EMDR different from other therapies?
EMDR is different from many “talk therapies” in that it does not require the same degree of detailed discussion of past experiences. Processing takes place internally, instead of interpersonally or through language.
The focus of EMDR is on your natural healing process, rather than on what the therapist has to teach you or on the therapist’s guidance in understanding your experience.
Since other types of therapy are also valuable and important, sometimes therapists include EMDR with other psychotherapies.