EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing
It is a psychotherapy approach that has been proven to be quite effective at identifying and treating the distress associated with traumatic memories that linger after disturbing life experiences.
It is commonly believed that healing from trauma takes a long time in therapy. However, repeated studies show that with EMDR, healing can happen quite fast. Clients who have been going for conventional talk therapy for years have reported tremendous progress after only a few sessions of EMDR.
EMDR practice is based on the premise that the mind can heal from emotional wounds in a similar manner to the way the body heals from (physical) wounds. Let us imagine that you have a wound on your leg that has been festering for weeks and not showing signs of improvement.
Treatment would entail probing the area to check for any blockages to healing. You might discover a splinter, an unclean portion filled with pus, et cetera. Once this obstacle to healing is removed, the body resumes the healing work and leg will mend as expected.
The mind is believed to work the same way, from an EMDR perspective. When we go through traumatic experiences, a wound is inflicted on the mind. The mind immediately goes to work to alleviate the suffering.
Our inner fortitude and support from others can facilitate this process. Sometimes, there may be a blockage to the healing process, much like the splinter above. EMDR’s detailed protocols and procedures identify the blockage, remove it, and activate the healing process.
There has been so much research on EMDR therapy that it is now recognized as an effective form of treatment for trauma and other disturbing experiences by organizations such as the American Psychiatric Association, the World Health Organization, and the US Department of Defense.
Given the worldwide recognition as an effective treatment of trauma, you can easily see how EMDR therapy would be effective in treating the “everyday” memories that are the reason many people have low self-esteem, feelings of powerlessness, and all the various problems that bring them in for therapy.