Have you experienced a traumatic event that you can’t seem to forget?
Do you feel like you can’t control or get rid of negative thoughts and feelings after a stressful event in your life? You may feel like you can’t stop thinking about a bad memory or you play the events over and over in your head. You may feel strong feelings or have images in your head that remind you of it.
You may feel like no matter what you’ve tried, you can’t stop thinking about it, or being triggered by it at times when you least expect it. You may find yourself repeating the same unhealthy patterns that get you nowhere in relationships, at work, or with your physical health.
EMDR therapy can help you find relief.
EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It is a highly effective treatment that can be used for many issues that may be causing you significant distress, including unresolved memories and experiences.
EMDR essentially helps the brain learn to process stressful information in a healthy way. One way to imagine how EMDR works is to imagine the traumatic memory as an electrical outlet, and your intense, fearful physical and emotional experiences as the plug. EMDR is like removing the plug from the outlet, so that there is not an electrical (emotional) charge connected to the outlet (memory). EMDR helps you remember the traumatic memory without getting the intense emotional charge.
After EMDR treatment, a person no longer relives the images, sounds, and feelings when the traumatic event is brought to mind. While EMDR does not erase the memory of what happened, it does make that memory less upsetting. EMDR can also be effective in helping increase confidence and feelings of calm during difficult situations. It can help build positive beliefs and self-esteem, which may allow you to find greater success in job interviews, public speaking, and dating.
Imagine being able to experience the past or the future with confidence and peace instead of fear and anxiety. EMDR can get you there.
EMDR can help decrease your fear of the memories, so you don’t have to use avoidance as a coping skill. When you avoid intense or painful memories, you cut off a part of yourself, making it impossible to integrate these experiences in healthy ways. This can lead to unhealthy patterns and behaviors, along with triggered emotions when you are reminded of the traumatic event.
We use EMDR therapy with our clients only when we feel that it is an appropriate time in therapy, and you feel supported in dealing with difficult memories. We will help you develop coping strategies to experience this treatment in a safe, supported way.
While EMDR is done in the process of talk therapy sessions, it can be a wonderfully relieving type of treatment for people who can’t discuss the specific details of what happened. Your eyes are closed, and most of the session consists of you quietly thinking through the memories, and not having to share every detail. While we do discuss what is occurring, processing information through talking is minimal. We also find that after clients do EMDR, they are more able to discuss what happened, as the emotional intensity has decreased and they find more comfort in talking about it.
If you are struggling with the effects of trauma, you are not alone.
Many people have experienced some sort of traumatic experience but don’t understand how it is affecting them, and that it can be healed. After traumatic or fearful experiences, the brain does not always process information as it would in ordinary situations. The traumatic experience can become “stuck,” almost like a broken record.
Your brain may be unable to move forward as it tries to make sense of something scary or difficult. Later, your brain may become triggered with any sort of reminder of the stressful experience, causing you to re-experience the same emotions, images, sounds, smells, and physical sensations that you felt the first time the trauma occurred. Intense memories and reminders like this can have a significant, lasting negative effect and interfering with the way you relate to yourselves, others, and the world.