Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR)
EMDR therapy is an effective form of treatment that helps alleviate symptoms related with, but not limited to, PTSD and other related traumas, depressive and anxiety issues, eating disorders, addictions and grief. After a treatment plan is developed with EMDR therapy, the client works with emotionally unpleasant thoughts and images in mind. They will then be asked to pay attention to an outside stimulus including eye movements or tapping guided by the counselor. For example, in a session with EMDR, a client may be asked to bring attention to a distressful thought or image in their mind, as well as negative beliefs and body sensations associated with the traumatic event. Afterward, the client will exercise deep breathing and discuss what was brought up during the exercise. The cycle continues until client distress has reduced.
Proponents of EMDR therapy suggest that it works by building new connections between a client’s traumatic memories and adaptive information (for example, positive beliefs) within other areas of the memory, bringing about a reduction in client distressful symptoms.