EMDR therapy - Eye Movement Desentsitization Reprocessing
This therapy is based on the theory that traumatic events aren’t properly processed in the brain when they happen. This is why they continue to affect us — with nightmares, flashbacks, and feelings of the trauma happening again — long after the actual trauma is over.
When something reminds you of the trauma, your brain and body react as though it’s happening again. The brain isn’t able to tell the difference between the past and the present.
This is where EMDR comes in. The idea, known as the adaptive information processing model, is that you can “reprocess” a disturbing memory to help you move past it.
This therapy aims to change the way that the traumatic memories are stored in your brain. Once your brain properly processes the memory, you should be able to remember the traumatic events without experiencing the intense, emotional reactions that characterize post-traumatic stress.
During an EMDR therapy session, your therapist will ask you to briefly focus on a trauma memory. Then, they’ll instruct you to perform side-to-side eye movements while thinking of the memory. This engages both sides of your brain and is termed bilateral stimulation.
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