Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, or EMDR, is a quick and long lasting psychotherapy technique which has been successful in helping people who suffer from trauma, anxiety, panic as well as a number of other concerns.
EMDR helps you process disturbing material in a different way. Instead of just talking about it, EMDR allows the brain to reprocess it in a way that reduces the intensity of the reaction in the body and mind through bilateral stimulation (eye movement, tapping or auditory.) Painful feelings are exchanged for more peaceful and resolved feelings.
The World Health Organization has recommended EMDR as one of only two treatments they deem effective for treating children, adolescents and adults with PTSD.
EMDR is not the same as hypnosis. Nor does it erase disturbing memories. It has the effect of reducing the intensity of disturbing memories so they are less likely to trigger intense emotions.
In addition to trauma, EMDR has also been used to effectively treat:
- Anxiety/panic attacks/phobias
- Complicated grief
- Disturbing memories
- Chronic pain
- Performance anxiety (and for athletic performance enhancement)
EMDR addresses trauma symptoms in your mind and body (your nervous system), reducing the number of sessions required to see positive results compared to talk therapy alone.