Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing therapy (EMDR) is a therapy used to treat unresolved trauma. It is recommended by NICE* guidelines as an effective treatment for anxiety disorders.
When we sleep, we experience Rapid Eye Movement (REM), which is when our natural coping mechanisms occur, and we process events into memory. EMDR therapy mimics this REM stage of sleep from the outside. While the patient talks through their traumatic experience, the therapist moves their finger, or a light, across the patient’s visual field, replicating the REM process. Patient’s may also be asked to tap their body in a technique called butterfly self-tapping. By triggering these repeated eye movements to mimic the REM process, the patient can lessen the intensity of a traumatic memory of the past, turning that memory into a neutral feeling.
This therapy helps people deal with unresolved trauma, especially patients who may have flashbacks to a traumatic period in their lives. Many patients with phobias, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorders, post-traumatic stress disorders and trauma find EMDR therapy useful. Many patients who have been or who are currently the subject of bullying have found success with this therapy and its coping mechanisms.
For adults 18 and over, sessions can be conducted in person, or online. To find out more, or to book a session, please get in touch.
*NICE is the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. NICE guidelines are evidence-based recommendations for health and care in England.