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EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing. EMDR is a comprehensive method of psychotherapy that addresses problems that are based on earlier, traumatic and/or psychologically distressing life experiences or events.

Our brains store information in memory networks containing related thoughts, emotions and sensations. When we experience a traumatic event the system for processing memories becomes overwhelmed and the information does not get processed and it becomes frozen or stuck. The memory becomes stored as it was perceived at the time, in pictures, emotions and sensations and creates dysfunctional responses, including nightmares, new fears and avoidance strategies. The traumatic memory can feel as vivid as when it happened and cause a person to be flooded by unwanted images, sensations or negative thoughts. The stuck memory can be triggered or activated by a reminder and cause a reaction that is stronger than how you would normally react as you are not just reacting to what’s happening right now, but also to the stuck memory.

EMDR therapy relies on alternating left-right stimulation of the brain, for example through side to side eye movement or alternating taps that you can feel, which appears to help the brain to process the frozen or stuck information. As a result, the stuck memories seem to lose their intensity; they become less distressing and seem more like 'ordinary' memories. EMDR helps reduce the distress of all the different kinds of memories, whether it was what you saw, heard, smelt, tasted, felt or thought.

EMDR uses an eight phased approach to address the past, present & future memories that we store, with the aim of reducing the intensity of disturbing memories, whilst increasing a more adaptive belief about the future.

EMDR is a proven treatment for trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, but it has also been found to help with the following problems: Attachment, Anger, Anxiety, Depression, Behavioural & Substance Addictions including smoking and food, Co-Dependence, Chronic Pain, Complicated Grief, Eating difficulties, Insomnia, Intergenerational trauma, Low self-esteem, Phobias, Performance, Somatic Pain.

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