What is EMDR?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a therapeutic process which will clear troubling emotions and negative thinking linked to trauma and other painful past experiences. Some people have said that EMDR helped them more in one session than other therapies had in years.

"EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) provides a way for people to free themselves of destructive memories and it seems to work, even in cases where years of conventional therapy have failed." - Hugh Downs, 20/20, ABC News

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EMDR is a SHORT-TERM therapy. During an EMDR session the patient combines the focusing on a memory and moving one's eyes while following the therapist's fingers or an object that is used to focus on. As the session begins you will be aware of the feelings and thoughts connected to the memory while simultaneously making the rapid eye movements. As the process starts, your perception of the traumatic memory will begin to change. It can become more complete, with an increase in the emotional content or intensity. Or the memory may fade. Regardless of how EMDR proceeds, the unpleasant feelings and negative thinking fade and are replaced by more positive feelings and thoughts.

When the process is completed you will remember the event. Understand and know that it happened but will no longer be "haunted" by it or disturbed by the memory. This then changes the way you view other parts of your lives.

"Barry first suggested EMDR explaining that it could help me break my blocks fast. Initially, I was skeptical of such sudden change. However, immediately after my first EMDR session I began to feel tremendous positive change and a genuine boost in my self esteem. As a result I was able to trust my feelings and make better decisions by listening to my gut. EMDR is painless and effective. I recommend it to anyone who is interested in making real progress quickly."
--Celine Ruben-Salama

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How can EMDR help YOU?

Studies to date show a high degree of effectiveness with the following contitions:

  • Fears
  • Depression related to trauma
  • Surviving childhood abuse
  • Performance and test anxiety
  • Sexual abuse and/or physical abuse
  • Anxiety or panic attacks
  • Surviving an assault or robbery
  • Surviving a rape
  • Witnessing violence
  • Loss or injury of a loved one
  • Childhood trauma
  • Rage attacks
  • Surviving an accident
  • Overwhelming fears
  • Low self-esteem

Experts Speak Out:

"This has all the indications of being a major new resource in behavior therapy."
--Joseph Wolpe, MD., Originator of Systematic Desensitization

"The first seven years of experience with EMDR has shown that it can be a very effective treatment model of PTSD."
--Bessel A. van der Kolk, Phd

"EMDR is by far the most effective and efficient treatment we have ever used with dissociative episodes, intrusive memories, and nightmares with Vietnam combat veterans."
--Howard Lipke, Ph.D., Former Director, Stress Disorder Treatment Unit, North Chicago Veterans Administration Medical Center

"EMDR is a powerful tool for the treatment of traumatic stress reactions including PTSD. It has been utilized with remarkable effects in both the acute and prolonged versions of traumatic stress."
--Jeffrey Mitchell, Ph.D., President, International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, Ellicot City, Maryland, USA