As humans, we have all probably experienced something that we would classify as “traumatic.” Also, as humans, we are all unique. Put two people in the exact same situation and one might develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and the other may not.  There can be many reasons for this including ways in which the brain processes a traumatic event. There are many factors that influence how we experience the events around us.

If you’ve suffered a traumatic event, you may be dealing with some of the following symptoms (this is not a full list):

  • feelings of isolation
  • hypervigilance
  • panic
  • inability to experience positive emotions
  • easily startled
  • trouble with concentration
  • avoiding any reminders of the event
  • nightmares
  • flashbacks of the event

You may also be dealing with negative beliefs about yourself or the world as a result of the trauma.  These could include feelings of failure or a belief that the world is out to get you.  When people experience these symptoms day after day, it can be overwhelming and they may start to wonder where they can find relief.

Eye-Movement Reprocessing and Desensitization (EMDR) is an evidence-based treatment for PTSD that may be able to help. Our Atlanta EMDR therapists are passionate about their work.

What is EMDR?

EMDR is a type of therapy that helps you process your trauma while stimulating both sides of your brain using lights, sounds, movements, or tapping. It helps you to identify the negative thoughts and beliefs that you developed as a result of the trauma. 

EMDR can be a shorter-term trauma therapy.  It’s can also be effective. Further, you don’t have to discuss your trauma in detail. EMDR is structured, and it is conducted in 8 phases. Your Atlanta EMDR therapist can explain and help you explore whether EMDR is a good fit for you.

How Can EMDR Help?

Your therapist will ask you to think of the distressing event and notice how your body reacts, what negative thoughts are associated with the event, and what beliefs developed as a result of the trauma.  Throughout treatment, you will note levels of distress as a way to assist with measuring progress. Your Atlanta EMDR therapist will help you identify positive thoughts and beliefs that you’d like to carry instead of the negative thoughts and beliefs.

For example, a first responder in a natural disaster might carry guilt and feelings of failure if they were unable to save someone.  Their negative belief might be, “I’m a failure.”  In EMDR, they might work to change that belief to “I did my best.”

Part of EMDR treatment is Resource Installation.  This helps you continue to develop your resilience, reduce your distress when confronted with triggers, and increase your ability to tolerate the memories of your trauma.

If you’re struggling with PTSD and are searching for relief, our Atlanta EMDR therapist wants to help.  Please don’t delay in getting the help you deserve.  We’d love to support your healing.  Call us today.