Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing is a different form of therapy that focuses less on the event itself and more on the emotions and symptoms that result from the event. Both sides of the brain are stimulated, using either eye movement or tapping alternate knees or hands. EMDR was originally developed to treat symptoms of PTSD, but has been used successfully to treat anxiety, panic attacks, depression, anger, phobias, sleep problems, grief and loss, addictions, pain, performance anxiety, low self esteem and many other mental health issues.
Most of the time your body routinely manages new information and experiences without us being aware of it. However, when the person experiences a traumatic event (eg car accident) or repeated traumatic event (eg childhood trauma), your natural coping mechanism can be overloaded. This overload causes these experiences to be frozen in your brain and they become ‘unprocessed’. Often, when the memory is long forgotten, but the painful feeling such as anxiety, panic, anger or despair are continually triggered in the present. EMDR helps create the connections between brain’s memory networks, enabling the brain to process the traumatic memory.
EMDR is not a form of hypnosis. The client remains in control, fully alert and awake, and can stop the process at any time. I support and facilitate the healing process, but my input is minimal. I trust the amazing brain of the client to heal itself, which the brain can do. Most people report EMDR as being a natural and empowering therapy.
EMDR enhances the natural healing ability of the brain. In sessions with clients, working with EMDR, I have helped clients cease to have flashbacks, stop OCD behaviours and dealt with phobias.
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