It is known that the brain has a natural mechanism for processing disturbing events, however, when a traumatic experience is overwhelming, the brain may not be able to process it in the usual way. That is why people who have experienced trauma often find themselves stuck in disturbing memories or unwanted response patterns long after the traumatic event. Research suggests that an important part of the brain's natural trauma processing happens during REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, when alternating stimulation of the right and left hemispheres of the brain occurs. In an EMDR session, we use specific questioning and eye movements and/or tapping to stimulate the right and left hemispheres of the brain, similar to what occurs naturally during REM sleep. By doing so, EMDR therapy seems to jump-start the brain's natural healing ability, allowing the traumatic memory to become less and less disturbing.

How Does EMDR Work?

There are two types of trauma, big "T" trauma and little "t" trauma. Big "T" traumas are the major horrific events, like motor vehicle accidents, combat, rape, or the loss of a child. Little "t" traumas are the smaller everyday chronic horrors, like daily negative messages from others leading a person to grow up believing they will never be good enough. Trauma may be best understood as the pattern of responses to any life event that is experienced as overwhelming. EMDR can help heal trauma that is both overt and more subtle. It is important to understand that EMDR therapy can temporarily be a very intense emotional experience. For this reason, we will take a thorough history to determine if and how EMDR can be used as part of an overall treatment plan for you.

When Is EMDR applicable?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a psychotherapy used to treat symptoms such as anxiety, guilt, anger, depression, panic, chronic pain, sleep disturbance, and flashbacks that are the result of traumatic experiences. Not only has EMDR therapy been proven effective in reducing the chronic symptoms which follow trauma, the therapy benefits appear to be permanent. EMDR is now the most researched treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Browse EMDR research here.

What is EMDR?

If you are experiencing the symptoms of post-trauma such as fears/phobias, sleep disturbances, anxiety, anger, guilt, flashbacks, chronic pain or depression Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing therapy may be the therapy for you.



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