trauma and recovery

               A Traumatic Experience and Its Recovery

Trauma and Recovery. Despite their best efforts, some people feel that they’re going nowhere and accomplishing nothing in their lives. Clients can become discouraged when they keep hitting the same roadblocks. A better life may seem out of reach because you believe you’re undeserving or unworthy of it. Self-limiting behaviors like these may be a result of past trauma. EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, is one of the greatest therapies for dealing with traumatic trauma.

Dr. Laura S. Brown, Ph.D. is a past recipient of the American Psychological Association Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Public Service. She considers EMDR as a new window that empowers the client to get their lost powers back and heal holistically.

EMDR is specifically designed to heal clients suffering from trauma. It is completely different from CBT or other talk therapies. EMDR is gaining great popularity because of its efficacy and fast results.

Seven of 10 studies reported EMDR therapy to be more effective than trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy. Also, twelve studies noted a rapid decline in destructive emotions. An additional 8 report a variety of other memory effects. In treating PTSD symptoms, the American Psychological Association (APA) greatly recommends EMDR therapy. For individuals with a psychotic condition, one pilot trial revealed that EMDR therapy was incredibly beneficial. It has also shown benefits in alleviating symptoms of depression and anxiety. The treatment also had a positive effect on the self-confidence of the patients.

Trauma and Recovery

HOW DOES EMDR RESOLVE PTSD EFFECTIVELY?

The informed therapist who picks up EMDR as the mode of therapy for you may begin by making you relive the painful memory or the event.  This step is done by a therapist trained in EMDR. The therapist will ensure that you do not feel terrible or become resentful while discussing it. For this, they employ the rapid eye desensitization technique and may ask you to follow the movement of their hand or grab the direction of the light. This is repeated until you successfully establish a neutral focus on the event. You then feel empowered enough to talk about the trauma. You then go through the 8 stages of EMDR that help get rid of the trauma or the PTSD that has kept you stagnant and dysfunctional.

A trained mental health counselor directs the patient through a series of steps after the recollection of a traumatic episode in detail. The patient’s emotional and even physical reactions to such events, as well as their memories of them, are all important factors to consider during this process. Also their memories of them.

To aid the patient in re-living the traumatic experience, the therapist guides the client to move their eyes in exact patterns throughout the recollection of the event. These eye movements actually aid in the rewiring of the brain. It also assists in the reconditioning of the response to the traumatic memories that they evoke.

Researchers believe that it works because the eye functions as a kind of brain extension for the subject. The brainstem is the location where memories and emotions are processed. This is a result of the biochemical processes that occur when light reaches the retina.

In a study in which the limbic system was forced to absorb painful memories and emotions while the eye was required to analyze fast successions of varied visual stimuli, the impact of the memories was shown to be reduced. As a result, the brain is no longer able to respond as strongly to these painful memories as it would otherwise.

Because of the desensitization and reprocessing features of EMDR, the brain becomes habituated to creating such suppressed responses to these memories. Over time as a result of the therapy’s application. There will come a point when the memories will no longer elicit the same bodily and emotional responses as they did earlier.

The 8 stages of healing via EMDR

These eight stages are quite significant if you want to establish a decent understanding of the technique and the benefits it gives to the patients suffering from PTSD. The following is an overview of the eight phases:

  1. The stage of history taking and devising a treatment plan: The therapist asks about the trauma, its effects, and symptoms. This will help them create an effective treatment plan for you.
  2. Understanding the treatment plan: Your therapist will go over the treatment plan with you, explain EMDR and what to expect during therapy. During this stage, your therapist’s rapport with you and your ease in discussing your difficulties is vital.
  3. Assessment of the event: During this stage, the therapist will make you go over the traumatic memory again, this time with an improved perspective, and evaluate it as an outsider.
  4. Desensitization: At this point, the therapist will help you detach yourself from the distressful thoughts and dissociate yourself from the pain.
  5. Paradigm Shift: At this stage you regain your thoughts and control over traumatic memories. You will be able to adopt an optimistic outlook towards the event.
  6. Physical Evaluation: Before and after the treatment, you will be asked to compare your bodily signs of strain and stress. After EMDR, you’ll be able to tell if your muscles are still tense. It’s easy to see how far you’ve come by comparing the two stages.
  7. Closure or Termination: The therapist will wrap the session up and inform you about the next ones and what to expect from them.
  8. Reevaluation or the follow-up: This occurs after every session to review your improvement.

Trauma and Recovery

EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing) is a life-changing method for PTSD patients. If you or someone you love is going through this, seek EMDR sessions with a trained EMDR therapist.

Feel free to reach out to: tania@therapyhec.com if you would like to schedule an EMDR therapy session or if you have any questions about it.