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What is EMDR Therapy?

EMDR has been proven to quickly and effectively reduce symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), panic attacks, anxiety, distressing memories, grief, and several other emotional issues. Until recently, treatment for these symptoms was often a lengthy and difficult process. For some individuals, remembering a trauma may feel as bad as going through it again because the images, sounds, and feelings haven’t changed. Such memories can have a lasting negative effect that interferes with daily life and relationships. EMDR is a powerful and efficient option for those seeking lasting relief from distress and recovery from trauma.

After EMDR therapy, the patient will be able to recall traumatic events without the associated negative emotions and achieve a more peaceful state.

How Does EMDR Work?

EMDR employs active bilateral stimulation to engage both sides of the brain. In therapy, the client revisits distressing events, guided by the therapist during tactile stimulation. This process mirrors the way the brain processes information during dreaming. EMDR's standardized protocols draw from various approaches, reshaping how the brain handles memories. Following successful sessions, individuals no longer relive negative experiences, remembering them with less distress. EMDR offers a physiological shift, allowing a new perspective on traumatic events and empowering clients with coping skills for present and future challenges.

Is EMDR Right for Me?

Research shows EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is an incredibly effective way to move through trauma.

Here at OK Clinical Therapy Group, we are so proud of the caring, highly skilled staff on our team who can support you with this approach. Here’s what you need to know before starting the journey.

What Makes Someone Ready for EMDR?

Before someone begins to work on healing trauma, the evidence is clear that they must first have a level of safety and security if treatment is to be effective.

With that in mind, before you and your therapist start EMDR treatments, you will spend one to multiple sessions building an essential foundation of trust, and ensuring there are supportive pillars of safety and security in your life so EMDR can help you heal.

The list below outlines important foundational elements that you will need to have in place before EMDR can begin.

EMDR Readiness Checklist:

Please note: If there is something on this list that you cannot check off today it does not mean EMDR is not possible—It just means it may not be the right time to jump in just yet, and that your therapist will be happy to walk alongside you to help you reach readiness for EMDR to begin.

You will need:

  • Time to do EMDR both weekly and hourly
  • Supports in your life (like friends or family)
  • Ability to stay in the present and not dissociate
  • Tolerance for a potentially high level of emotional discomfort (which may arise during some EMDR treatments) and ability stay emotionally regulated
  • Commitment to taking any prescribed medications regularly (or openness to considering a medication evaluation and plan if necessary)
  • Not be abusing drugs or alcohol
  • Not be dealing with a legal issue (or, if you are, the deposition should have happened before you begin EMDR)
  • Not be suicidal or self-harming

If this sounds like you, or sounds like a place you would like to move toward, please reach out to one of our gentle, compassionate therapists today.

EMDR for Children

EMDR can help with anyone from any age. It addresses upsetting or overwhelming experiences and the memory of what happened can stay stuck (unprocessed) in the mind and body. Initial stages create a secure space using art or figurines, incorporating bilateral stimulation for comfort. As therapeutic trust grows, children revisit trauma through talk, art, or play, aided by bilateral stimulation for emotion reprocessing. Though initially daunting, EMDR, guided by a skilled therapist adept in child-focused approaches like art, play, and sand tray therapy, provides a secure therapeutic environment, ensuring effective and tailored healing for each child's unique needs.

Our EMDR Counselling Team

Our counsellors are ready to help you on your path to healing and recovery. 

Best Fit Form

Looking for the right counsellor? Fill out our ‘Find The Right Counsellor’ form, and our team will connect you with the perfect fit for your mental health needs. Get started on your journey to wellness today!

See if EMDR can Help You

Our counsellors are clinically trained and experienced in EMDR and we look forward to helping you heal from trauma. Each of our counsellors is a trained expert and all of our services can be conducted virtually from anywhere, guaranteeing that anyone asking for trauma services can receive professional service with no wait times.