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EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a powerful psychotherapy approach that has helped an estimated two million people of all ages relieve many types of psychological distress.
Depending upon the type of Large or small trauma you have experienced in your life, the EMDR Therapist can help you relieve the psychological distress you feel in anywhere from 1 to 5 sessions, and for more serious trauma, 1 to 10 sessions.
EMDR therapy targets the unprocessed memories that contain the negative emotions, sensations and beliefs. By activating the brain’s information processing system, the old memories can then be “digested”. Meaning what is useful is learned, what’s useless is discarded, and the memory is now stored in a way that is no longer damaging.
What Kinds of Problems Can EMDR Treat?
Scientific research has established EMDR as effective for post traumatic stress, as well as using EMDR for:
How Long Does EMDR Take?
One or more sessions are required for the therapist to understand the nature of the problem and to decide whether EMDR is an appropriate treatment. Karen Greenhouse, PhD (c), MFT, CSAT will also discuss EMDR more fully and provide an opportunity to answer questions about the method. Once the therapist and client have agreed that EMDR is appropriate for a specific problem, the actual EMDR therapy may begin.
A typical EMDR session lasts from 60-90 minutes. The type of problem life circumstances, and the amount of previous trauma will determine how many treatment sessions are necessary. EMDR may be used within a standard “talking” therapy, as an adjunctive therapy with Karen Greenhouse, PhD (c), MFT, CSAT, or as a treatment by itself.
How Does EMDR Work?
No one knows how any form of psychotherapy works neurobiologically or in the brain. However, we do know that when a person is very upset, their brain cannot process information as it does ordinarily. One moment becomes” frozen in time”, and remembering a trauma may feel as bad as going through it the first time because the images, sounds, smells and feelings haven’t changed.
Such memories have a lasting negative effect that interferes with the way a person sees the world and the way they relate to other people.
EMDR seems to have a direct effect on the way that the brain processes information. Normal information processing is resumed, so following a successful EMDR session, a person no longer relives the images, sounds and feelings when the event is brought to mind. You still remember what happened, but it is less upsetting. Many types of therapy have similar goals. However EMDR appears to be similar to what occurs naturally during dreaming or REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Therefore, EMDR can be thought of as a physiologically based therapy that helps a person see disturbing material in a new and less distressing way.
There has been so much research on EMDR that it is now recognized as an effective form of treatment for trauma and other disturbing experiences by organizations such as the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association and the Department of Defense.
Given the worldwide recognition as an effective treatment of trauma, you can easily see how EMDR would be effective in treating the “everyday” memories that are the reason people have low self-esteem, feelings of powerlessness, and all the myriad problems that bring them in for therapy. Over 70,000 clinicians throughout the world use the therapy.
Does EMDR Really Work?
Approximately 20 controlled studies have investigated the effects of EMDR. These studies have consistently found that EMDR effectively decreases/eliminates the symptoms of post traumatic stress for the majority of clients. Clients often report improvement in other associated symptoms such as anxiety.
The current treatment guidelines of the American Psychiatric Association and the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies designate EMDR as an effective treatment for post traumatic stress. EMDR was also found effective by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense, the United Kingdom Department of Health, the Israeli National Council for Mental Health, and many other international health and governmental agencies. Research has also shown that EMDR can be an efficient and rapid treatment.
How We Can Help
Karen Greenhouse, Ph.D., MFT, CSAT has been fully trained in the art and science of EMDR.
If you wish to feel less distressed with life events that have stayed with you through time, please feel free to call or contact me directly NOW for a confidential, complimentary telephone consultation about your concerns and to discuss your options. Contact me at (818) 859-6766 or use the Contact Form to the right to learn how I may be of assistance to you.