what is edmr?

This is an NHS approved trauma treatment (NICE Guidance). Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing is a psychological therapy developed by Dr Francine Shapiro in the 1980’s. It can be used successfully in the treatment of a variety of emotional and behaviour difficulties as well as processing traumatic events. It uses bilateral stimulation methods which may include eye movements using a light bar, tactile stimulation using buzzers or auditory stimulation using headphones. There is no physical pain but you may recall painful thoughts and feelings, the intensity of which will decrease or go away completely with the treatment.

how can it help?

During normal experiences, ordinary memories are formed using the body information from your senses, and they usually have a story-like quality from which you can make impressions, interpretations and facts about what happened. Our brain receives this information which passes through an emotional filter in the right side of the brain called the amygdala before moving to the hippocampus on the left where the memory is stored. However, if we are overly distressed or overwhelmed our brain is unable to process this and memories get stuck in our central nervous system and so memories are easily triggered and can often feel like they are happening again and start to intrude on our everyday life. EMDR will help put memories into the correct part of the brain and so events get stored in long term memory.