EMDR therapy, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, is a powerful and effective treatment for trauma, anxiety, and other mental health issues. If you’re considering EMDR therapy, you might be wondering what it’s like and what to expect during a session.

What is EMDR therapy?

EMDR therapy is a form of psychotherapy that helps people process traumatic memories and distressing experiences. It uses bilateral stimulation, such as eye movements, tapping, or sounds, to activate the brain’s natural processing system. This can help to reduce the emotional charge of traumatic memories and make them less distressing.

What happens during an EMDR therapy session?

An EMDR therapy session typically follows eight phases:

  1. History and treatment planning: In this phase, you and your therapist will discuss your goals for therapy and develop a treatment plan.
  2. Preparation: Your therapist will help you prepare for EMDR therapy by teaching you relaxation techniques and grounding exercises.
  3. Assessment: Your therapist will assess your traumatic memories and identify targets for treatment.
  4. Desensitization: This is the core phase of EMDR therapy, where you will focus on a specific traumatic memory while engaging in bilateral stimulation.
  5. Installation: Your therapist will help you install positive beliefs about yourself and your ability to cope with the trauma.
  6. Body scan: You will scan your body for any physical sensations associated with the trauma.
  7. Closure: Your therapist will help you close the session and ensure that you are feeling safe and grounded.
  8. Reevaluation: At the beginning of each subsequent session, your therapist will reevaluate your progress and adjust the treatment plan as needed.

What are the benefits of EMDR therapy?

EMDR therapy can be very effective in reducing the symptoms of trauma, anxiety, and other mental health issues. Some of the benefits of EMDR therapy include:

  • Reduced symptoms of PTSD, such as flashbacks, nightmares, and intrusive thoughts
  • Improved mood and sleep
  • Reduced anxiety and depression
  • Increased self-esteem and coping skills
  • A greater sense of control over your life

What are the risks of EMDR therapy?

EMDR therapy is generally safe, but it can sometimes cause temporary side effects, such as:

  • Increased emotional distress
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Dizziness

These side effects are usually mild and temporary. However, it is important to talk to your therapist if you experience any side effects that are bothersome.

Is EMDR therapy right for me?

EMDR therapy can be helpful for people who have experienced trauma, anxiety, or other mental health issues. If you are considering EMDR therapy, talk to your doctor or a mental health professional to see if it is right for you.

Here are some additional things to keep in mind:

  • EMDR therapy is not a quick fix. It typically takes several sessions to see results.
  • EMDR therapy can be emotionally challenging. It is important to be prepared to relive some of your traumatic experiences.
  • It is important to find a qualified EMDR therapist who has experience treating your specific condition.

I hope this blog post has helped you learn more about EMDR therapy and what to expect in a session. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below.

In addition to the information above, here are some other things you can expect during an EMDR therapy session:

  • Your therapist will create a safe and supportive environment for you to share your experiences.
  • You will be in control of the pace of therapy and can stop at any time if you feel uncomfortable.
  • Your therapist will provide you with support and guidance throughout the therapy process.

With EMDR therapy, you can overcome trauma and experience a more fulfilling life. Reach out to us at Blossom Counseling for more info. 

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