Memories of past trauma or abuse can wreck havoc on your peace of mind and they can find their ways into your relationships. Flashbacks, fear, and a general sense of overall feeling not-right can get in between your happiness and goals. It doesn’t have to be this way forever.
EMDR has been approved by the American Psychiatric Association, the Department of Veteran’s Affairs, and the Department of Defense as an effective form of therapy for PTSD. The depth of traumatic distress can run deep and can take years to heal with traditional talk therapy. EMDR is a technique designed to help your brain reprocess distressing emotions and separate them from a specific traumatic memory. The result is the client reporting a feeling like what happened to you is a movie you watched, rather than remembering what happened and re-experiencing all those feelings and emotions all over again when you engage that memory.
This therapeutic technique is also well researched for the treatment of:
- panic attacks,
- auto accidents,
- childhood abuse
- sexual abuse
- anxiety related to public speaking, dental procedures and more.
- “ordinary stresses” such as job loss, broken relationships, worry over children’s academia, and more.
For healthy clients who are seeking to relieve personal stress, it may only take two or three sessions before treatment using EMDR can begin. It can take weeks or months before this technique can begin with highly traumatized clients. This is because the therapist must take a proper client history, establish a therapeutic relationship, clarify the goals of therapy and assess the client’s ability to process emotional material. These processes are very important to ensure deep and proper healing for the client.
It is important to remember that no therapy tool works perfectly for every person. While many people report profound relief from anxiety and stress from emotional memories and worry, some people experience less positive benefits or none at all. The nature of the client, the client’s issues, and the skill of the therapist all plays a part in the healing experience. It’s also important to know that EMDR is often used in conjunction with traditional talk therapy and not a technique used solely alone.
It takes quite a long time and a lot of training for a therapist to become fully trained in this technique, and Chico Creek Counseling has two therapists skilled and trained in this modality:
Tara Donnell, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (530) 354-4568
Jessica Wilkerson, Marriage & Family Therapist Intern (530) 921-5122