"Trauma Creates Change You Don't Choose. Healing Is About Creating Change You Do Choose" - Michelle Rosenthall
What is EMDR?
Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR) is an evidence-based therapy that uses bilateral stimulation to help with trauma recovery. The goal of EMDR is to reduce the emotional intensity of the traumatic memory by changing the way it’s stored in the brain. This also reduces the level of distress faced by the client when exposed to the traumatic memory.
Conditions EMDR Can Help With:
EMDR can be used as a method of counselling for a variety of conditions. These include:
Techniques Used in EMDR:
EMDR includes eight stages of treatment.
1) Gathering history
The client talks about any distressing experiences or memories that they wish to target during the treatment. They are also asked to describe the levels of stress related to each memory. This helps the counsellor to chart a treatment plan that addresses specific memories.
In the preparation stage, the counsellor will teach you stress management techniques like deep breathing, visualization, and muscle relaxation.
In this stage, you are asked to recall the specific memory that they want to target. You will also be asked to identify any unpleasant feelings, bodily sensations, visual images, and self-beliefs that are associated with the memory. Your counsellor will then ask you to think of a positive belief that you have about yourself. This is important for a later stage.
Desensitization is all about weakening the relationship between a traumatic memory and the negative feelings it causes in a person. This is where bilateral stimulation comes in. While you recall the memory, your counsellor will guide you through bilateral stimulation sets which include eye movements, auditory tones, blinking lights, and tapping. You will also be asked to identify any thoughts, images, and physical sensations that occur during this process. This is repeated until the traumatic thought no longer causes you distress.
In this stage, the counsellor will ask you to focus on the positive belief that you identified in the assessment stage. You will be led through more bilateral stimulation sets to strengthen this positive belief.
6) Body scan
You’ll be asked to identify any physical symptoms while recalling the traumatic memory and the positive belief. This is done in order to see well the treatment worked. If there is still some leftover distress, your counsellor will lead you through another round of bilateral stimulation.
This stage marks the end of the EMDR session. Your counsellor will discuss the progress and teach you how to maintain it. They might give you homework and teach you relaxation techniques like visualization and journaling.
Reevaluation happens at the start of every new session. You will be asked about your level of progress related to the targeted memories. If they still cause distress, your counsellor will re-address them using EMDR. If not, you can move on to other memories.
Reach Out Today!
Located in the beautiful Orchard Treatment & Wellness Center at 4012 Perth Rd #107, Shakespeare Ontario, the Reclaim & Rise Counselling Team and myself are local to Stratford, Tavistock, New Hamburg, and the Kitchener-Waterloo area. We also offer remote therapy across Ontario so that you can access the support you need - no matter where you are!
Using evidence-based therapeutic approaches, we can help you begin to reclaim your well-being, so that you can rise above whatever is holding you back, and enjoy your life the way you were always meant to.
To get started you can fill out a contact form by clicking the link below.
I'm looking forward to supporting you!