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What Is EMDR?

smiling young woman sitting outdoors on a pleasant day and finally understanding what is EMDR

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is an interactive psychotherapy technique used to relieve psychological stress. EMDR was developed in the late 1980s, and many people still ask, “What is EMDR?” This practice has been around for decades and is becoming an increasingly popular alternative and a great addition to talk therapy.

Connections Wellness Group, with locations throughout the Dallas/Forth Worth metropolitan area, offers EMDR therapy programs for mental health treatment. Call 940.360.4245 to learn more about how EMDR works and get started today.

What Is EMDR?

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a type of psychotherapy that helps people process difficult memories, experiences, thoughts, or feelings more quickly. During an EMDR session, you will be guided through a sequence of eye movements while recalling emotionally charged events in your life. This technique encourages more fluid processing of these memories and the associated emotions, allowing them to be better integrated into your existing belief system.

What Conditions Does EMDR Treat?

EMDR can be used to help reduce symptoms of many mental health issues, such as:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Phobias
  • Traumatic memories
  • Grief reactions

This treatment is not solely related to trauma, as it can be used to treat any mental health issue.

How EMDR Works

EMDR works by helping your brain reprocess the difficult memories and emotions associated with traumatic events or negative thoughts that you may have about yourself. During an EMDR session, a therapist will guide you through a series of eye movements, taps, or tones. These techniques are intended to help the brain to process and integrate information more quickly and effectively.

What to Expect in EMDR Therapy

An EMDR therapy session consists of the following phases:

Phase 1

History gathering sessions: this is how every therapy session starts—learning about you

Phase 2

Preparation/Assessment: our trained EMDR Therapists will answer all of the questions you have regarding treatment

Phases 3 through 6

Targeting a traumatic event and then desensitizing and reprocessing that memory

  • EMDR patients are usually told to recall a distressing event
  • While recalling said event(s), the patient will repeat a repetitive gesture like tapping, moving the eyes side to side, or they may hold onto something that produces a rhythmic vibrating frequency. This is called bilateral stimulation.

Phases 7 and 8

Closure and evaluation: distressing thoughts/memories are locked away sometimes using imagery, and you and your EMDR therapist will discuss your progress

What Are The Benefits Of EMDR Therapy For Mental Health?

The benefits of EMDR therapy for mental health are numerous. This can make it an excellent option for those who do not want to take medication or are looking for an alternative to traditional talk therapy.

Some of the benefits include the following:

1. Quicker processing of difficult memories and emotions

2. Reduced symptoms related to mental health issues such as PTSD, anxiety, depression, phobias, and traumatic memories

3. Non-invasive treatment that does not require medication or lengthy talk therapy sessions

4. Can be used for the treatment of any mental health issue

5. Improved integration of emotionally charged events into existing belief system

Contact Connections Wellness Group About EMDR Therapy for Mental Health

At Connections Wellness Group, EMDR is part of our comprehensive mental health treatment program. EMDR allows the patient to relax, revisit a distressing experience, and recall the feelings and emotions that were felt at the time. This will enable patients to confront negative emotions in a safe and controlled place with the intent to overcome them.

If you or a loved one could benefit from EMDR therapy for mental health treatment, call Connections Wellness Group today at 940.360.4245 or reach out online. Don’t wait to get started on the road to better mental and emotional well-being.