By: Dawn Associates  29-09-2013
Keywords: Anxiety Counselling, Depression Counselling, Stress Counselling

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of psychotherapy that was developed to resolve symptoms resulting from disturbing and unresolved life experiences. It uses a structured approach to address past, present, and future aspects of disturbing memories. Clinical trials have been conducted to assess EMDR's efficacy in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It has been shown to be equivalent to cognitive behavioral therapy and exposure therapies, and more effective than some alternative treatments. The theory underlying EMDR treatment is that it works by helping the client process distressing memories more fully which reduces the distress. It is an integrative therapy, synthesizing elements of many traditional psychological orientations, such as psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral, experiential, physiological, and interpersonal therapies. EMDR's most unique aspect is an unusual component of bilateral stimulation of the brain, such as eye movements, bilateral sound, or bilateral tactile stimulation coupled with cognitions, visualized images and body sensation. EMDR also utilizes dual attention awareness to allow the individual to vacillate between the traumatic material and the safety of the present moment. This prevents retraumatization from exposure to the disturbing memory. Studies have examined the effects of eye movements and have found that eye movements in EMDR decrease the vividness and/or negative emotions associated with autobiographical memories, enhance the retrieval of episodic memories, increase cognitive flexibility, and correlate with decreases in heart rate, skin conductance, and an increased finger temperature. Utilized since 1988, EMDR is now recognized by the American Psychiatric Association & the American Department of Defense/Veterans’ Affairs, as well as by many regulatory bodies in the UK, Europe, South America and the Middle East. Although controlled research has concentrated on the application of EMDR to PTSD, EMDR is effective with other problems and issues including anxiety disorders, depression, relationship issues and childhood disorders. EMDR is an excellent way of releasing the pain from the past, to free up your resources for the present and future. EMDR is regulated by the EMDR International Association (EMDRIA), which oversees the training, certification and consultation of EMDR therapists throughout the world. Website resources include: • EMDR International Association (EMDRIA): www.emdria.org • EMDR Canada: www.EMDRCanada.org • EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Programs: www.emdrhap.org

Keywords: Anger management, Anxiety Counselling, Depression Counselling, Emdr, Grief Counselling, individual counseling, Professional Counselling, PTSD, Relationship Counselling, Stress Counselling, Trauma Counselling

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