“There is no timestamp on trauma. There isn't a formula that
you can insert yourself into to get from horror to healed. Be patient. Take up space. Let your journey be the balm.” – Dawn Serra
What is EMDR Therapy?
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma. Moreover, EMDR is a set of standardized protocols that incorporates elements from different treatment approaches.
How Does EMDR Work?
EMDR therapy repeatedly activates opposite sides of the brain through a technique called bilateral stimulation, which therapists facilitate using eye movements. Additionally, therapists often use eye movements to facilitate the bilateral stimulation. Also, these eye movements mimic rapid eye movement (REM) phase of sleep, a period when the mind processes recent events. This portion of sleep is frequently considered to be the time when the mind processes the recent events in the person’s life.
EMDR helps reprocess trapped memories in a way that resumes normal information processing. Therapists often use EMDR to uncover and process beliefs that result from relational traumas, childhood abuse, or neglect. For a more detailed explanation please visit EMDR Institute, Inc.
What Does EMDR Help?
Initially developed as a treatment for PTSD, EMDR has been shown to be effective in treating a range of conditions, including:
- Panic Attacks
- Complicated Grief
- Dissociative Orders
- Disturbing Memories
- Pain Disorders
- Performance Anxiety
- Stress Reduction
- Sexual and/or Physical Abuse
- Body Dysmorphic Disorders
- Personality Disorders
None of The Symptoms or Experiences Fit You?
Do you experience distressing emotions that appear to you, and perhaps to others, to be excessive given the current situation? Do you tend to be highly reactive to certain triggers? Is there one or more dysfunctional belief that you believe about yourself that on an intellectual level you know is not true?
If so, you may still be a good candidate for EMDR therapy.
What Happens in a Session?
EMDR is different for everyone because the healing process is guided from within. Sometimes past issues or memories come up, which are related to the current concern. These may also be treated with EMDR, perhaps in the same session. Sometimes a painful memory brings up unpleasant emotions or body sensations. This is normal and generally passes within a few minutes, as long as the EMDR is not stopped. The upsetting emotion or memory often seems to fade into the past and lose its power.
Why Bring up a Painful Memory?
When painful memories are avoided, they keep their disturbing power. However, a flashback or nightmare can feel as upsetting and overwhelming as the original experience, yet not be helpful. In therapy, and with EMDR, you can face the memory in a safe setting, so that you do not feel overwhelmed. Then you can get through it and move on.
Will I Be In Control?
It is hard to predict the thoughts, feelings, or memories that might come up during EMDR. It depends upon each individual’s natural healing process. You are always in charge of whether to continue or stop. You can also decide how much to tell the therapist about the experience. The therapist serves as a guide to help you stay on track and get the most out of the session and may encourage you to continue through difficult parts.
What Happens Afterward?
You may continue to process the material for days or even weeks after the session, perhaps having new insights, vivid dreams, strong feelings, or memory recall. However, this may feel confusing, but it is just a continuation of the healing process, and should simply be reported to the therapist at the next session. (However, if you become concerned or depressed, you should call your therapist immediately.) As the distressing symptoms fade, you can work with the therapist on developing new skills and ways of coping.
Interested in Beginning EMDR Therapy in Macon, Alpharetta, Savannah, or Hiram, GA?
Don’t wait to reach out for help. Whether you’re struggling with the aftermath of a traumatic event or simply feeling overwhelmed by life’s challenges, EMDR therapy could be the support you need to move forward and find healing. So take the first step today and reach out to one of our qualified therapists in Macon, Alpharetta, Savannah, or Hiram, GA. Your mental health and well-being are worth it. If you’re interested in starting your therapy journey:
Other Therapy Services Offered at The Comfy Place
At The Comfy Place, we understand that you may struggle with more than just one mental health issue. This is why our skilled and caring therapists provide a variety of services online or at our practices in Macon, Alpharetta, Savannah, or Hiram, Georgia. Our services include: Therapy for Adults, Therapy for Young Adults, Therapy for Teens, Children’s Therapy, Family Therapy, Group Therapy, Therapy for Couples, and Online Therapy. We also specialize in Anxiety, LGBTQ, Brainspotting, Trauma Therapy, Play Therapy, ADHD and ADD, PTSD, Depression, Grief, Anger Management, Self Esteem, and Life Transitions. The Comfy Place is also accepting new clients for counseling in Florida, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Maine, Vermont, Connecticut, New York, Utah, Michigan, Illinois, and South Carolina.
We’re here with open arms, ready to answer your questions and get you or your child started on the path to healing and happiness!