EMDR Therapy

The mind can often heal itself naturally, in the same way as the body does. Much of this natural coping mechanism occurs during sleep, particularly during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Francine Shapiro developed Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) in 1987, utilising this natural process in order to successfully treat Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Since then, EMDR has been used to effectively treat a wide range of mental health problems.



What is an EMDR session like?



EMDR utilises the natural healing ability of your body. After a thorough assessment (approx. 2-3 sessions), you will be asked specific questions about a particular disturbing memory/ies. Eye movements, will be re-created simply by asking you to watch my finger moving backwards and forwards across your visual field. The eye movements will last for a short while and then stop. (This is not hypnotherapy and you will be fully awake and aware during sessions). You will then be asked to report back on the experiences you have had during each of these sets of eye movements.  

Experiences during a session may include changes in thoughts, images and feelings.  With repeated sets of eye movements, the memory tends to change in such a way that it loses its painful intensity and simply becomes a neutral memory of an event in the past.  Other associated memories may also heal at the same time. This linking of related memories can lead to a dramatic and rapid improvement in many aspects of your life.


What can EMDR be used for?


In addition to its use for the treatment of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, EMDR has been successfully used to treat:

· anxiety and panic attacks

· depression

· stress

· phobias

· sleep problems

· complicated grief

· addictions

· pain relief, phantom limb pain

· low self-esteem


How long does treatment take?

EMDR can be brief focused treatment (6-8 sessions) or part of longer psychotherapy (9+ sessions).