Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a therapeutic approach that has gained popularity in recent years as an effective tool in treating a range of psychological issues. EMDR was originally developed in the 1980s to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but it has since been used to treat a wide variety of other conditions, including anxiety, depression, and phobias.
The basic premise of EMDR is that traumatic experiences can become “stuck” in the brain, causing ongoing symptoms of anxiety, depression, and other emotional disturbances. EMDR aims to facilitate the processing of these traumatic memories, allowing the brain to integrate them in a more adaptive way.
During an EMDR session, a therapist will ask the client to recall a traumatic memory and then engage in some form of bilateral stimulation, such as eye movements or tapping. This bilateral stimulation is thought to help the brain reprocess the traumatic memory and integrate it in a more adaptive way.
One of the unique features of EMDR is the way it combines elements of different therapeutic approaches, including cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and psychodynamic therapy. EMDR also incorporates mindfulness techniques and elements of hypnotherapy.
The effectiveness of EMDR has been supported by a growing body of research. A meta-analysis published in the Journal of EMDR Practice and Research found that EMDR was more effective than no treatment and equally effective as other therapies for PTSD. Another meta-analysis published in the Journal of Anxiety Disorders found that EMDR was more effective than no treatment and as effective as other therapies for anxiety disorders.
EMDR has also been found to be effective in treating depression, phobias, and other psychological conditions. One study published in the Journal of EMDR Practice and Research found that EMDR was effective in reducing symptoms of depression in individuals with a history of childhood abuse.
Overall, EMDR is a versatile therapeutic approach that can be beneficial in treating a range of psychological issues. By facilitating the processing of traumatic memories and promoting adaptive integration of those memories, EMDR can help individuals find relief from the symptoms of anxiety, depression, and other emotional disturbances.
Diana Smith, PhD, LPC-MH owns and operates Serenity Mental Health Services and is licensed by the National Board of Certified Counselors. License number is LPC-MH2025 and she follows the ethical guidelines described by the NBCC found at their web site www.nbcc.org/webethics2. Diana is a member of the National Board for Certified Counselors, Certification Number 43911. In addition, she is also a member of the American Counseling Association, Member ID# 5140627. Online counseling can help you right now. Research has made it clear that this manner of offering therapy is effective and those who’ve experienced it have said they would seek it out again.
Dr. Diana is an APA (American Psychological Association) EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) approved Therapist in Training.