Getting Past Your Past With EMDR

Getting Past Your Past With EMDR

EMDR therapy has been proven effective for treating a variety of disorders, particularly depression and anxiety. Additionally, it may benefit those suffering from physical ailments like chronic pain, sleep disorders or medically unexplained symptoms as well.

EMDR’s rapid processing of trauma memories has important ramifications for the healthcare system as well. Adversary experiences like trauma or negative family and community interactions seem to be at the root cause of many psychological and physical health conditions.

Research in this area has been largely neglected by the scientific community, yet there are increasingly strong connections between early disturbing experiences in childhood and a range of mental health conditions. For instance, the Kaiser Permanente Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Adverse Childhood Experiences Study (ACE) revealed that people who suffered multiple adverse childhood experiences such as child sexual abuse, domestic violence or traumatic brain injury are significantly more likely to develop serious, potentially life-threatening disorders later on in life.

Substance abuse, obesity, depression and even psychiatric diseases like schizophrenia or bipolar disorder have been linked to these trends.

Studies have demonstrated that EMDR can be an effective treatment for many conditions, with results that last. As a result, it has become one of the fastest growing and most sought-after forms of psychotherapy worldwide.

In order to begin using EMDR, you will need a skilled and licensed therapist who has knowledge and experience in this area. Your therapist must have completed training approved by EMDRIA and should possess expertise both in general EMDR therapy as well as your specific problem or disorder.

Your therapist should thoroughly explain the EMDR procedure to you and ensure you feel confident before beginning it. They must also emphasize that EMDR is not a quick fix; it takes some time for memories to be processed.

Therapy typically begins by recognizing an upsetting memory that is causing you distress and choosing to focus on it during the session. Your therapist will guide you through eye movement exercises that encourage reprocessing and reframing your memories in new ways, helping reduce stress associated with past events while allowing you to move on more positively.

You may experience a sense of being overwhelmed or distressed when reflecting upon a memory, but this should subside as your brain begins to process the information differently. Additionally, you’ll begin feeling less fearful and distressed and more like yourself again.

Once you feel better, it is perfectly acceptable to take a break and let your EMDR therapy sessions continue between appointments. Doing so will allow your brain to continue processing the information acquired during each EMDR session.

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