EMDR Vs Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
EMDR (Electro-magnetic stimulation) and cognitive behavioral therapy are both successful treatments for mental health disorders and addictions. But each has its own distinct advantages and drawbacks that must be considered before making a choice about which therapy to select.
In an EMDR session, your therapist will help you process painful memories that are causing you distress. They also teach you coping techniques for future use so that stress and anxiety can be better managed in the future.
The initial step of EMDR is gathering all your information, including details about the trauma you are trying to process. You may be asked to describe events in great detail or simply recall one memory from your past.
Once your therapist has identified which memory you wish to reprocess, they will guide you through bilateral stimulations. This may involve eye movements, tones or tapping that activate the brain’s natural healing system and help process the memory.
It’s essential to find a therapist with experience using EMDR as well as the required training. Generally, they have completed at least basic instruction through EMDRIA-approved training institutes or consultancies.
When interviewing a therapist, be sure to inquire when they were trained and whether or not they adhere to professional standards in their practice. If not, do not proceed with working with them.
EMDR is an evidence-based treatment for those suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), emotional distress and other traumas linked to memory or past life experiences. It has been used successfully in treating conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, eating disorders and chronic back pain.
In general, EMDR has more lasting effects than CBT in the long run, as its effects are usually more immediate and persistent. As such, it offers a great choice for those searching for an efficient way to deal with trauma.
An EMDR therapist may recommend that you complete a series of sessions, which could last anywhere from 12 to 24 weeks. Usually, these appointments will be scheduled one to two times per week for 6 to 12 weeks.
Your therapist may assign you homework exercises to practice between sessions. These could include recognizing negative thoughts or beliefs and rating them according to how they affect how you feel today.
These activities may seem challenging at first, but they will teach you how to manage difficult emotions and reactions. Your therapist will guide and support you throughout this process, offering encouragement along the way.
Aside from reprocessing past memories, EMDR can also help address any other issues that have caused you to feel anxious, depressed or uncomfortable. It helps you reframe and accept the reality of your situation.
Reprocessing occurs during this phase, when your therapist guides you through bilateral stimulations to reprocess traumatic memories and desensitize you to the emotions causing stress. You’ll remain awake and aware throughout this time, so if needed, you can tell your therapist to stop.