EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) therapy is a counseling approach which has been proven highly effective for the treatment of trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder.
EMDR utilizes eight phases in treatment, beginning with a thorough client history, preparation, and assessment, then proceeding to desensitization to traumatic events or memories. The counselor then guides the client in creating a new, positive association and helps the client identify and reduce and physical or emotional discomfort associated with the original memory. Relaxation techniques are also used during treatment to avoid creating additional disturbances.
Desensitization is achieved through the use of bilateral stimulation, such as tapping your knees or pulsing lights held in each hand, which helps to "unstick" your thoughts and reduce anxiety provoked by traumatic memories.
EMDR therapy has been shown in multiple studies and clinical trials to be effective in treating the symptoms of post-traumatic stress. Counselors are required to undergo intensive training, consultation, and supervision in order to be certified in EMDR. NOLA Counseling Center is proud to include several EMDR-certified clinicians, so please visit Our Counselors and contact Dr. Martin, Traci, or Melanie if you are interested in learning more about EMDR therapy.
"What is EMDR?" EMDR Institute, Inc.
"What is an EMDR session like?" EMDR International Association (includes descriptions of each of the 8 phases of treatment)
"The Evidence on EMDR" An interview with Dr. Francine Shapiro, developer of EMDR, in The New York Times.
"What is Bilateral Stimulation?" www.AnxietyReleaseApp.com