What is EMDR?

November 1, 2023
Written by:
Kristen Berglund

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR is an evidence-based treatment for trauma. Based on the Adaptive

Information Processing (AIP) model, EMDR assumes that our brains have

natural processes to recover from stressors. However, when those stressors

are significant, trauma can get stored in maladaptive ways and may cause our

nervous system to react in the present as though a past event is occurring


What can be treated with EMDR?

Research suggests that not only is EMDR effective for treating PTSD, it also

may help with the following:

 Depression

 Anxiety and Phobias


 Insomnia

 Chronic Pain and other Illnesses

 Personality Disorders

 Substance Abuse and Addiction

How does EMDR work?

EMDR is a structured type of therapy that is implemented in multiple phases.

It employs the use of bilateral stimulation of the brain (usually eye movements

or tapping) while briefly focusing on memories. EMDR taps into the natural

recovery processes already employed by your brain to help “reset” your

nervous system to a calmer state.

How is EMDR different from traditional therapy?

Unlike other types of therapy, EMDR does not require that you talk extensively

about trauma. EMDR is often more efficient than traditional talk therapy and

may require fewer sessions to meet goals.

For more information about EMDR, visit About EMDR Therapy – EMDR

International Association (emdria.org).

Contact B Well Counseling Center to schedule an appointment or discuss

EMDR further with a trained EMDR practitioner.