EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, is a type of psychotherapy that was developed in the late 1980s by psychologist Dr. Francine Shapiro. EMDR uses specific eye movements to help people heal from psychological trauma and other emotional issues that may be preventing them from leading a full, healthy life. The process helps to desensitize individuals to the traumatic memories, allowing them to move on from the experience. During a session, the therapist will guide the client through rapid eye movements which can be performed manually (by having the client move their eyes back and forth) or electronically (using light bars or tones). As this takes place, the client focuses on a particular memory or emotion while their therapist helps them to identify any associated thoughts, feelings and beliefs. After several sessions of EMDR therapy, clients often report feeling more at peace with their past experiences as well as improved mental health going forward.
The core of EMDR is identifying traumatic events from the past and helping the individual work through them in a mindful way. During sessions, the practitioner will ask the client questions about their experiences, feelings and associated thoughts; then guide them through various types of eye movements. This helps bring awareness to both conscious and unconscious parts of the mind so healing can take place.
At Benchmark Transitions, we use this form of therapy in combination with other evidence-based modalities such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). We believe that this integrated approach gives our clients the best chance for success in tackling their mental health issues, leading to improved overall wellbeing in life. We are committed to providing effective treatments that are tailored specifically for each client’s unique needs and circumstances.