For those seeking relief from mental trauma, consider rapid eye movement therapy at Braden Counseling Center in Rochelle, IL. EMDR therapy, also known as Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, is a psychotherapy approach that has been highly researched and is proven effective for treating trauma.

One of the ways in which EMDR therapy is particularly effective is for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In addition to treating people using EMDR for PTSD, our Rochelle, IL clinicians have also reported success with EMDR therapy for anxiety.

Treatment is used for the following conditions:

  • Panic Attacks
  • Complicated Grief
  • Sexual and/or Physical Abuse
  • Phobias
  • Performance Anxiety
  • Personality Disorders
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorders
  • Addictions
  • Stress Reduction

How Does EMDR work?

There is no set rule for how any psychotherapy works in the brain. What is known is that when an individual is very upset over an event, the brain cannot always process that information correctly. That particular moment becomes “frozen,” so to speak. Recalling the event, again and again, can often be as painful as the event itself. All of the images, sounds, feelings, and smells feel like they are right in front of you again, only they are not. Memories like these have a lasting effect on you, and often cause problems regarding the way the afflicted person sees the world.

This is where EMDR therapy can help tremendously. The approach has a direct effect on how the brain processes information. Once a person has been through an EMDR therapy session, they will no longer recall these traumatic events in the ways they once were. The sights, sounds, smells, and feelings will become dull and start to fade away. You will still remember what happened, only the event will not be as upsetting to you. EMDR therapy has similarities to what happens during REM (Rapid Eye Movement) cycle sleep or dreaming.

EMDR Therapy for PTSD in Rochelle, IL

EMDR Therapy is a multi-layered treatment plan that involves multiple stages in order to complete.

The first two are history and treatment planning. This phase takes 1 or 2 sessions in which a thorough history of the client is taken, and a treatment plan is developed. There will be target areas that the therapist will identify. These include what the stressful situations are, and the skills needed to bring the client into a future of well-being.

The next few sessions will deal with EMDR therapy for anxiety or PTSD. Here is where the client will learn specific techniques for those times when anxiety levels rise, so they can deal with them quickly. This phase is crucial to developing a trustful bond between the client and the therapist.

After that, the therapist will begin memory targeting. This goes beyond merely talking about the event. The client will be asked to recall a specific scene from their memory. Then, they choose a statement that expresses a negative self-belief that connects with the event. The client then picks a positive statement that they would prefer more. This phase looks at all of the negative emotions and positive re-affirmations that will replace the negative. During reprocessing, the groundwork will be laid for the rapid eye movement therapy that is about to commence.

The therapist will look at all of the client’s responses to the targeted events. This gives the client an opportunity to address similar events, and to resolve elements of each. The therapist will lead the client in sets of eye movements, with changes of focus, that gradually reduce the event in the mind of the client. The client rates the disturbance levels based on the SUD scale (Subjective Units of Disturbance), from 0 (no disturbance) to 10 (the worst feeling ever).

Once that phase has been completed, we will look at the positive beliefs that the client has identified to replace their negative feelings and emotions. The goal here is for the client to accept the full truth of their positive self-statement at the highest level. The client understands they must learn new ways of dealing with their anxieties for treatment to be successful. New skills have been introduced, and it is crucial the client learn them going forward. This is ongoing, so the eye movement therapy treatment can reach its goal.

The next step is known as body scan. Once recognition of positive skills has been reinforced, the client is asked to picture the traumatic event, in order to evaluate residual feelings and thoughts still lingering in their mind. When a person has been negatively affected by trauma, that information is stored in the motoric (or body systems) memory and not in narrative memory. Positive beliefs must be believed on more than just an intellectual level.

Finally comes closure and re-evaluation. Each session ends with closure. This is where the client leaves feeling better than when they came in. The client is always in control in every session, and it is ok for the participant to raise his or her hand and say “stop” at any time. Clients are encouraged to journal their experiences between sessions. When the client comes back for another session, the therapist checks that positive results are still in place and that EMDR therapy is still working. Often, clients feel relief from the early sessions, but it is important to continue through all the phases of treatment.

How to Get in Touch

Please get in touch with us today if you are looking to learn more about eye movement therapy at our Rochelle, IL location.

The friendly and knowledgeable counselors at Braden Counseling Center want nothing more than to help you achieve happiness. Let us assist you in learning how to cope with your trauma, so you can get back to the life that you want to live, stress-free.