EMDR Therapy for traumatic memories and PTSD

EMDR Therapy for traumatic memories and PTSD from Accessible Psychology bulk billing Psychologists in Sydney, NSW

By: Accessible Psychology bulk billing Psychologists in Sydney, NSW  12-Jan-2011
Keywords: Anxiety Counselling, Stress Counselling, Trauma Counselling

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a scientifically validated form of therapy 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. The approach was developed to resolve the development of trauma-related disorders as resulting from exposure to a traumatic or distressing event. Clinical trials have been conducted to assess EMDR's efficacy in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Other conditions resulting from both emotional and physical trauma, mild to severe, have been successfully treated with EMDR.

EMDR is established as an evidence-based treatment for PTSD. Although a number of different processes underlie EMDR, the eye movements add to the therapy's effectiveness by evoking neurological and physiological changes that may aid in the processing of the trauma memories being treated. Eye movements (or other sensory stimulation if sight is not available e.g. tones, or tapping) add the unique element of bilateral stimulation. 

When a traumatic or distressing experience occurs, it may overwhelm usual ways of coping and the memory of the event is inadequately processed; the memory is dysfunctionally stored in an isolated memory network. When this memory network is activated, the individual may re-experience aspects of the original event, often resulting in inappropriate overreactions. This explains why people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic incident may have recurring sensory flashbacks, thoughts, beliefs, or dreams. An unprocessed memory of a traumatic event can retain high levels of sensory and emotional intensity, even though many years may have passed.

EMDR works directly with memory networks and enhances information processing by forging associations between the distressing memory and more adaptive information contained in other semantic memory networks. It is thought that the distressing memory is transformed when new connections are forged with more positive and realistic information. This results in a transformation of the emotional, sensory, and cognitive components of the memory so that, when it is accessed, the individual is no longer distressed. Instead he/she recalls the incident with a new perspective, new insight, resolution of the cognitive distortions, elimination of emotional distress, and relief of  related physiological arousal.

When the distressing or traumatic event is an isolated, single incident, approximately three sessions are necessary for comprehensive treatment. When multiple traumatic events contribute to a health problem—such as physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, parental neglect, severe illness, accident, injury, or health-related trauma that result in chronic impairment to health and well-being, or combat trauma, the time to heal may be longer, and complex, multiple trauma may require many more sessions for the treatment to be complete and robust. Accessible psychology can offer EMDR for suitable clients. Please call or email us to find out if this the may be the right treatment for you  

Keywords: Anxiety Counselling, Anxiety Panic, Clinical Psychology, Bulk Billing, Cbt, Emdr, Counselling, Anxiety, Depression, Sydney, Glebe, Medicare Rebates, Stress Counselling, Trauma Counselling,

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