How to Relieve Trauma Using Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing

A traumatic experience can result in various changes in your brain. The intense changes could stop your mind from processing information efficiently, forcing you to deal with intrusive thoughts resulting in depression or anxiety. The good news is, there are various treatments your doctor could use to relieve you of psychological stress. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is one of the therapies your doctor could use. Brooklyn EMDR experts help their patients overcome their struggles with trauma.   

EMDR therapy 101

EMDR is a non-traditional form of interactive psychotherapy utilizing sensory input like eye movements to help you recover from symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Your doctor will deploy EMDR techniques to unblock emotional processes barred by distress. Unblocking your emotions helps reprogram your brain. Thus, your healing process from the pain and fear related to your trauma begins.   

What You Need to Know About EMDR Therapy Before Treatment

EMDR is safe and effective with minimal side effects, unlike prescription medications. Since the therapy entails triggering traumatic memories, it could result in a heightened thinking awareness which fails to stop immediately after a session ends. Thus, it causes realistic and vivid dreams.

The treatment does not end overnight. You will need multiple sessions to treat a mental condition effectively. The start of the therapy could bring back stressful memories, thanks to the heightened focus. Though the treatment is effective, it could be emotionally stressful.    

What should you expect from an EMDR therapy?

Professionals believe that when you perform rapid eye movements as you try to remember a traumatic event, you will be allowing your brain to process the memories and integrate them.

Your doctor will break the therapy into 8 different phases, meaning that you will have to attend various sessions. The treatment phases that focus on your past, present, and future will help you break the associations with particular situations and their symptoms. The phases will also help you solve your emotional distress and learn how to handle your current and future stress.

EMDR therapy phases are:

  •         History taking. Your doctor will evaluate your case, including your ability to tolerate stressful memories. The professional will then formulate a treatment plan based on your symptoms and behaviors that you want to modify.
  •         Preparation. In this phase, your doctor will teach you ways to deal with stress.
  •         Assessment. During the assessment phase, your doctor will identify specific traumatic memories you need to address.
  •         Desensitization. The phase involves reducing your reactions to traumatic memories. Your doctor facilitates desensitization by directing your eye movements.
  •         Installation. During this phase, your therapist’s focus is on installing positive thoughts on the traumatic experiences.
  •         Body scan. The phase is a meditative technique process in which your therapist will need you to scan your body to identify physical sensations.
  •         Closure. The closure phase involves you and your doctor discussing your progress, your positive impacts and how you will maintain them. The phase also notes the negative experiences your doctor will need to handle in the next stage.
  •         Reevaluation. This is the final phase and it involves reviewing the effectiveness of your treatment. 

EMDR therapy is effective and your doctor will use it to treat various mental health problems. To learn more on EMDR, contact your specialists by booking an appointment today.