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What is EMDR Therapy Used For and How Does it Help?



Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is a unique, non-traditional form of psychotherapy designed to diminish negative feelings associated with memories of traumatic events. This technique is particularly effective for those who struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). But what exactly is this kind of treatment and how does it help?


At The Wise Self, we assist our clients in rediscovering joy and satisfaction in their lives. One way to achieve this is by relieving stress and negative feelings. Together, let’s explore and dive deeper into the topic of EMDR therapy.


Understanding EMDR Therapy

This therapy was first developed in the late 1980s by Francine Shapiro, an American psychologist. The process involves eight phases, focusing on past recollections, present disturbance, and future actions. The goal is to help patients process traumatic memories and change their reactions towards them.


Unlike traditional talk therapy, EMDR does not require talking in detail about the distressing issue or completing homework between sessions. This particular procedure, instead, focuses on the disturbing emotions and symptoms that result from the event and aids the patient in identifying what they need to do to improve their health and wellness.


The Role of EMDR in Trauma Therapy

Healing From Trauma

The main objective of this procedure is to aid individuals in healing from trauma or other challenging life experiences. Specifically designed to alleviate the anguish linked to traumatic memories, EMDRIA recognizes this treatment as an extensively researched and proven method for recovery.


Reprocessing Traumatic Memories

This therapy entails revisiting a past stressful event and 'reprogramming' the memory with a new, positive belief. This process aims to alter how the traumatic event is stored in the brain, effectively reducing and eliminating problematic symptoms. The Institute emphasizes its focus on addressing past disturbing memories and related events.


Reducing PTSD Symptoms

It has been shown to enhance PTSD diagnoses, alleviate symptoms associated with trauma, and reduce overall PTSD symptoms. According to the American Psychological Association, this treatment involves a brief focus on the trauma, contributing to the reduction of PTSD symptoms.


Effective Treatment for Various Conditions

While initially developed to treat PTSD, EMDR has since been used effectively to treat a range of conditions including anxiety, panic disorders, and eating disorders. Healthline also asserts that this session relieves psychological stress, further broadening its application beyond PTSD.


Non-Traditional Approach

As mentioned earlier, unlike many forms of talk therapy, this method doesn't necessitate in-depth discussions of the traumatic event or assigned tasks between sessions. This can make it a more comfortable therapeutic option for some individuals. This point is underlined by WebMD, which describes this treatment as a nontraditional type of psychotherapy.


Quick Results

Some studies indicate that this specific healing approach yields faster results compared to traditional therapy, making it an appealing option for those seeking symptom relief in a shorter time frame. According to HelpGuide, Dr. Francine Shapiro, the developer of EMDR, serendipitously discovered that rapid eye movements can effectively reduce traumatic symptoms


How Does EMDR Therapy Help?

During a therapy session, the therapist will move his or her fingers back and forth in front of your face and ask you to follow their hand motions with your eyes. Meanwhile, the therapist will guide you to recall a disturbing event. This includes the emotions and body sensations that go along with it.


Gradually, the therapist will guide you to shift your thoughts to more pleasant ones. Some therapists use alternatives to finger movements, such as hand or toe tapping or musical tones.


People who use the technique argue that this session can weaken the effect of negative emotions. Before and after each treatment, your therapist will ask you to rate your level of distress. The hope is that your disturbing memories will become less disabling.


EMDR Therapist in Toronto

In Toronto, several trained professionals offer this specific treatment. These therapists are well-equipped to address various mental health issues using EMDR techniques. EMDR therapists in Toronto are highly sought after for their expertise in this unique form of therapy.


The EMDR method is an innovative and effective approach to treating PTSD and other traumatic experiences. It enables individuals to heal from symptoms and emotional distress resulting from challenging life experiences. If you're in Toronto or the surrounding areas and are considering EMDR, rest assured that numerous skilled and experienced professionals are ready to help.


Remember, it's essential to seek help when dealing with traumatic experiences. EMDR therapy could be the solution you need to reclaim control over your life and achieve emotional wellness... Start Your Healing Journey Now!

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