EMDR Therapy and Somatic Psychology

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EMDR Therapy and Somatic Psychology

EMDR is an evidence-based technique used to help clients resolve traumatic experiences that have negatively impacted their lives. It’s commonly used as a treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), dissociation, and other issues involving trauma and distress.

Your therapist will use bilateral stimulation to activate both sides of the brain. This could involve eye movements, tapping your hands rhythmically, or listening to audio tones.

The purpose of EMDR is to help you process traumatic memories and negative thoughts so they no longer cause anxiety or avoidance behaviors. You’ll also gain some techniques for managing the emotional impact of these memories and thoughts.

EMDR therapy consists of eight phases, usually completed over multiple sessions. Throughout each stage, the client’s progress is monitored and adjustments made as necessary by the therapist to suit individual needs.

In the initial stage, a therapist collects information about their client’s history. This gives them an extensive view of all circumstances leading up to the present issue.

Once the therapist has an accurate assessment of the situation, they will create a strategy for working through it. This includes pinpointing any specific events or incidents that have caused this problem and figuring out how best to support their client.

The second phase is dedicated to processing the traumatic memory and any related feelings, emotions or beliefs. During this time the client will focus on the memory while being guided through eye movements, tapping or sounds that engage both sides of their brain.

Your therapist will ask you to describe all sensations caused by the traumatic memory, in order to elicit emotion or feeling it triggered and gain more understanding into its effects on your life.

When beginning EMDR therapy, you may experience more emotion than usual – especially if you haven’t processed any traumatic events before. Usually, this is a good sign as it means your brain is actively working on processing and healing the trauma.

At this stage, your therapist may ask you to undergo a body scan in order to identify feelings and emotions caused by the traumatic experience. Generally, this process can take up to an hour.

Once the therapist has guided you through the body scan, they will then give you techniques to use on your own in order to manage any unpleasant feelings that arise during treatment. These are commonly referred to as “resourcing.”

Once you’ve mastered these, you may begin to experience the calming effects of EMDR more frequently in everyday life. This could include improved sleep, lower stress levels and greater confidence.

EMDR is an effective treatment for those who have experienced trauma and want to prevent future reoccurrence. It may also be beneficial for those who have developed negative beliefs about themselves, such as that they are unlovable or worthless. Through reprocessing and changing these negative thoughts can make the difference between living with PTSD or overcoming it.

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