EMDR

Theresa Henry MBACP (Accred)
EMDR Practitioner
Counsellor/Psychotherapist

CONTACT THERESA

 
 

WHAT IS EMDR?

For some people, when something traumatic has happened to them, the memory of their experience comes crashing back into their mind, forcing them to relive the event with the same intensity of feeling – like it’s taking place in the present moment.

These experiences may present as flashbacks or nightmares, and are thought to occur because the mind was simply too overwhelmed during the event to process what was going on.

As a result, these unprocessed memories and the accompanying sights, sounds, thoughts and feelings are stored in the brain in ‘raw’ form. Here, they can be accessed when something in everyday life triggers a recollection of the original event.

While it isn’t possible to erase these memories, the process of Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing (EMDR) can alter the way these traumatic memories are stored within the brain – making them easier to manage.

HOW DOES EMDR WORK?

When traumatic events happen, the body’s natural coping mechanisms can be overwhelmed and subsequently, the memory isn’t always processed adequately.

EMDR therapy looks to help you properly process these traumatic memories, reducing their impact and helping you develop healthy coping mechanisms. This is done through an eight-phase approach to address the past, present, and future aspects of a stored memory. This involves recalling distressing events while receiving ‘bilateral sensory input’, including side to side eye movements, hand tapping and auditory tones.

HOW CAN EMDR HELP?

The overall aims of EMDR therapy include the following: 

  • Reduce the re-experiencing of trauma memories.
  • Help you feel more able to cope with and manage trauma memories without needing to avoid potential triggers.
  • Help you feel more able to engage in and enjoy pleasurable activities and relationships.
  • Reduce feelings of stress, anxiety, irritation and hypervigilance – allowing you to rest well, address pressure and/or conflict and go about your daily business without feeling fearful and prone to panic.
  • Reduce feelings of isolation, hopelessness and depression.
  • A boost in self-confidence and self-esteem.

NEED SUPPORT URGENTLY?

Please visit the In Crisis page where there are helpful guides to understanding your feelings now and where to go for further support.

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