EMDR Therapy: Your Questions Answered

June 14th 2023

EMDR Therapy: Your Questions Answered,

At Living Bridges Therapy Collective, we pride ourselves on our pioneering approach to grief, loss, and trauma. We use a unique holistic care model with everyone who comes our way. We advocate for your mental health and every counsellor, associate, and staff member is committed to your healing.

Over time, our Kamloops counsellor team has received many questions about the therapy services we provide and we have gathered some great information about EMDR therapy for you here:

What is EMDR therapy?

EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, it is a method of therapy that ‘unlocks’ the nervous system in a way that allows the brain to process experiences. EMDR therapy was originally used to work with clients who have a history of trauma, but it is effective at treating all kinds of conditions that have a trauma component associated with them. Research has shown that EMDR therapy helps the brain shift memories from the emotional centres to the parts of the brain that process information.

How does EMDR work and What can I expect during a therapy session?

EMDR works through desensitization and processing phases, which allow your emotional wounds to be transformed into a state of resolution. During your EMDR sessions, you and your counselor will work through your memories and negative beliefs while engaging in bilateral stimulation. This can include such activities as eye movements, or gentle taps. It is believed that EMDR works because the bilateral stimulation bypasses the part of the brain that freezes during trauma; the affected area is preventing the brain from self-soothing.

During your sessions, your counselor will try to ascertain your feelings through as clear feedback as possible. There are no expectations in the process. Only the intent to discuss what is happening before incorporating some bilateral movement. Then afterwards, you can choose to discuss further.

What types of issues can EMDR treat and Who can receive EMDR therapy?

EMDR can help a wide range of individuals with mental health conditions. Adolescents, teenagers, young adults, and adults can benefit from EMDR treatment. It can help a patient begin to process experiences without distress or anxiety. Research has shown that EMDR is a highly effective methodology in treating some individuals who may have found it hard to accept other traditional treatment methods.

Testimonial: One of our clients “became aware of a traumatic memory while on vacation”. They had EMDR therapy to help them process the experience and troubling memories. “That traumatic event is something I can speak about as something that happened to me, but it doesn't have even a fraction of the distress it used to”. EMDR can help you too, reach out to the Living Bridges Therapy Collective in Kamloops.

Read another testimonial about EMDR from Jillian Shepherd, a past practicum student with Living Bridges.

Is EMDR therapy effective?

The first clinical trial investigating EMDR was in 1989. Since then, dozens of clinical trials have shown that this mental health treatment technique is highly effective and can even help a person faster than other therapy tools. [source] EMDR can help clients regain mental processing and reasoning which have been previously unaffected by other treatments. Recent research has shown that over 80% of single trauma victims experience freedom from PTSD after three, 90-minute sessions.

Click here for Five Reasons Why EMDR is So Effective!

Are there any risks/side effects associated with EMDR therapy?

As with any therapy involving the assessment or treatment of anxiety or stress, you may experience psychological distress at some point as you recall events, people, and/or situations. During EMDR, your counsellor will be on hand to offer you professional support as we try to keep any distress as low as possible while still allowing you to process your trauma.

Traumatic memories can live and manifest inside you, holding you in a vice grip of fear and isolation for a long time. You deserve to recover. With help from the team at Living Bridges Therapy Collective, you can receive clear, effective trauma treatment, and leave a traumatic past out of your present life.

Reach out if you are in Kamloops and need any more information about the Services we provide. We look so forward to speaking with you.