Trauma affects most people in one way or another. Whether an individual has experienced a “Big T” trauma, like combat or sexual assault, or a “small t” trauma, such as feeling as if you’ve never been good enough, or anything in between, this can have a pervasive effect on how you react to life on a daily basis. Working to resolve those traumatic memories can help to ease the fight, flight, or freeze reaction those memories can cause, and help you to enjoy a full life again.
One way that we may treat your trauma is through the use of EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing). EMDR is a powerful psychotherapy approach that has helped over two million people of all ages relieve many types of psychological distress. EMDR has been designated as an effective treatment by the American Psychiatric Association, the World Health Organization, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense, the U.S Department of Health and Human Services and more.
During EMDR, I will work with you to identify a specific problem as the focus of the treatment session. You will call to mind the disturbing issue or event, what was seen, felt, heard, thought, etc., and what thoughts and beliefs are currently held about that event. We will then work on the memory by alternately stimulating each side of your brain. This is done with bilateral stimulation (with eye movements, tapping, and/or music) while you focus on the disturbing memory and just notice what comes up for you. Each person processes information uniquely, and we will continue until the memory becomes less disturbing and is associated with positive thoughts and beliefs about yourself, such as “I did the best I could.” During EMDR you may experience intense emotions, but by the end of the session, most people report a great reduction in the level of disturbance. (Source EMDRIA client brochure)
If you’d like more information about EMDR and help deciding if it might be right for you, please contact me. More information is available on the EMDRIA website. I have copies of the “EMDR for Clients” brochure they mention, and I’d be happy to send you one.