How Does EMDR Work?

Been hearing a lot about EMDR recently. Would any of you have any experience with this type of therapy?

14 Comments leave a comment below

  1. I did it after trauma and it helped me reset after one sessions! I wore headphones where a sound bounced back and forth from ear to ear which simulates the same things as the eye movement. I highly recommend this.

  2. Yes, this really does work. I’ve been doing EMDR therapy for over a year and I am amazed at the change in myself. I used to be triggered by the smallest inconvenience, and didn’t understand where the anger came from. EMDR therapy has helped me to understand how the trauma of dealing with a narcissistic mother has filtered into other areas of my life, and has given my brain tools to deal with conflict. I am very glad I took the chance on this therapy.

  3. It was a game-changer for me. After only 5 sessions, coupled with cognitive behavior therapy, my perspective shifted dramatically. I believe I was literally re-wired.

  4. Thanks everyone for your responses!

  5. So timely. I’ve been looking into this, too!

  6. My best friend [my basset hound] died last year, and since then I have been dealing with horrible depression and suicidal thoughts. I started therapy last September, and then I started EMDR with my therapist a few months ago to help me process the trauma and grief. It is definitely helping! I have a long way to go, but between therapy, EMDR, and some psychiatric meds, I’m doing loads better. When I do EMDR, I wear headphones with a tone bouncing back and forth between my ears, plus I hold little devices in my hands that alternate vibrations. As my therapist has said, EMDR can be like eating dirt. It can be really painful and exhausting. [Definitely don’t expect to do anything the rest of the day after your first session!] Despite this, it is absolutely worthwhile.

  7. I had EMDR therapy to treat my PTSD from a violent crime experience. EMDR worked after just a few sessions and coupled with cognitive therapy was a literal lifesaver. I held the little vibrating devices in my hands. It was a simple, drug-free treatment and I felt lighter, better and more hopeful immediately. I highly recommend it!

  8. Yes, it can be amazing. Many techniques – get the one that you’re most comfortable with first.

  9. I had a few sessions of EMDR paired with many sessions of cognitive behavioral therapy after a violent marriage and I have seen serious results! It is hard to start and triggering at first but ultimately productive. PTSD is very hard to process but EMDR is a helpful tool.

  10. Yes, it definitely helped me with lessening the intensity of PTSD several years ago. I did the sound version (alternating ear to ear) and the visual version but never heard of the thing where the therapist speeds up faster and faster. I was skeptical but it did seem to ‘pop’ the bubble that kept the horrible emotions stuck. well worth it from my experience.

  11. I did EMDR (in addition to other kinds of therapy) after surviving a terrorist attack. I was skeptical but willing to try and I could not believe how much it helped me. May not work the same for everyone but I’d definitely recommend it for people struggling to move forward from traumatic events.

  12. I too had great success using EMDR combined with regular therapy to overcome anxiety and depression. I highly recommend it.

  13. I have done this for several traumatic experiences in my life. I can’t speak for everyone, but this worked like a miracle for me and I’m not using the word miracle lightly or hyperbolically. Also, I can’t explain to you why it worked. It just did. It melted the feelings around the trauma away. Of course I remember the traumatic experiences; I just don’t feel entangled emotionally with them anymore — at all.

  14. Research has shown that playing 20 mins of Tetris in the 6 hrs after a traumatic event can greatly reduce the severity of PTSD. This is dealing with the situation on the other end … with the same kind of tactic. The idea is to engage the brain in something else in order to keep the memory from having the chance to gel in the limbic brain.