46 – EMDR Therapy with Andrea Klepatz
written by Andrea Klepatz (Counselling Psychology, Clinical Social Worker) on 06/07/20
Has the Covid-19 pandemic triggered you to think, feel, or act in ways that feel unmanageable? Do you feel stuck and need some help to get back to the way you moved through life before covid?
What is Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)?
EMDR is is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been researched extensively and proven effective for many of the symptoms people find themselves struggling with since the onset of the pandemic like: the treatment of trauma, panic attacks, grief, depression, disturbing memories, insomnia, phobias, performance anxiety, stress reduction, addictions, and more.
Why would someone see a therapist who uses EMDR as an approach to therapy?
Individuals may pursue EMDR as a therapeutic approach because they are stuck and feel the other therapies they’ve tried have not alleviated their distress.
The goal of EMDR therapy is to update the overwhelming emotions, beliefs, and body sensations caused by unresolved earlier experiences and leave you with the emotions, understanding, and perspectives that will lead to healthier behaviours.
How does EMDR work?
EMDR harnesses our brain’s ability to change also known as neuroplasticity. If you’ve experienced adversity and trauma in your life, then that information may be hard-wired in your brain. EMDR helps the body rewire the brain to a more adaptive stance so that you don’t relive or use past information to make sound decisions today.
When we sleep, our body repairs. During REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage of sleep, we coordinate the information about the events of our day: we keep what is important and file away what is not important for survival. We call this our Adaptive Information Processing System: our natural compass that guides the healing process. It is exactly like how our body innately knows how to heal a physical cut – with an emotional cut, our body uses eye movements to repair the emotional wound. Sometimes during times of stress, like the covid pandemic, our body is overwhelmed and needs extra help to get back on track.
If you feel like EMDR may be a therapeutic approach to help you adapt to this pandemic in a healthier way, please reach out to Andrea on the Safe Harbour Therapy website.