EYE MOVEMENT DESENSITIZATION AND REPROCESSING (EMDR) THERAPY: HEALING TRAUMATİC EXPERIENCES

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is a psychotherapy method developed to alleviate distressing symptoms and support emotional healing after traumatic experiences that profoundly affect individuals' mental and emotional health.

Aug 22, 2023 - 14:19
Aug 23, 2023 - 12:52
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EYE MOVEMENT DESENSITIZATION AND REPROCESSING (EMDR) THERAPY: HEALING TRAUMATİC EXPERIENCES
EYE MOVEMENT DESENSITIZATION AND REPROCESSING (EMDR) THERAPY: HEALING TRAUMATİC EXPERIENCES

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy: Healing Traumatic Experiences

WHAT IS EMDR THERAPY?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is a psychotherapy method developed to alleviate distressing symptoms and support emotional healing after traumatic experiences that profoundly affect individuals' mental and emotional health.

EMDR therapy stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. EMDR therapy was developed by Francine Shapiro, an American psychologist. EMDR was discovered as a result of Shapiro's accidental realization that eye movements would be effective in coping with traumatic memories. Francine Shapiro, as a result of her studies, revealed EMDR as a therapy method that aims to process traumatic experiences and reduce the negative emotional reactions they create.

EMDR therapy refers to a therapy method used for the purpose of obtaining emotional relief through understanding and processing the ethics of traumatic events and memories that are subjectively perceived and whose effects cannot be meaningfully avoided.

EMDR WHOM AND HOW IS IT APPLIED?

EMDR therapy is applied to individuals who want to cope with the symptoms resulting from traumatic experiences, it is an effective therapy option especially for those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) (such as sexual assault, traffic accidents, natural disasters and childhood traumas).

EMDR therapy differs from other therapy methods in some aspects. Unlike other therapies, this therapy uses distracting stimuli such as visual or auditory stimuli. These vary according to the preferences of the therapists, but the visual stimuli generally used are finger gestures or light rings, while auditory stimuli are in the form of clapping or audible stimuli. The therapist asks the client to follow these stimuli with their eyes. This method involves a bidirectional process in which the individual's attention is directed to both the traumatic memory and the distracting stimuli.

EMDR therapy works like this: the therapist asks the client to describe a traumatic memory he has chosen, while he tells the client the event while at the same time watching the therapist's fingers moving left and right with his eyes. During therapy, the therapist guides the client to reinforce and support positive thoughts. At the end of the therapy, it is observed that the level of discomfort of the traumatic event described during the therapy sessions is reduced by this method and is replaced by more functional emotions. 

EMDR BENEFITS

EMDR therapy has many benefits. The benefits of EMDR therapy are as follows:

EMDR therapy provides the opportunity to reprocess traumatic events in individuals and transforms them into healthier, more functional thoughts and memories.

EMDR therapy helps to reduce emotional reactions such as anxiety, fear, panic and anger, which are the symptoms of PTSD caused by traumatic experiences.

EMDR therapy helps individuals to increase their self-confidence and strengthen their self-esteem.

During EMDR therapy, the individual can become more aware of his feelings, thoughts and body, so he can connect with himself better, which helps to increase self-awareness.

In addition, EMDR therapy can be used in combination with other therapy methods and is effective in increasing the effectiveness of therapy. For example; cognitive behavioral therapy.

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Melike Yavuz Merhaba ben Melike Yavuz. Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt Üniversitesi Psikoloji bölümünde 3.sınıf öğrencisiyim. Bir süredir okuduğum, öğrendiğim ve ilgi duyduğum alanlardan oluşan makalelerimi Sayedra Psikoloji Blog'ta paylaşıyorum.