For decades (and maybe even longer), the common consensus was that psychological trauma and some of its effects, including depression, anxiety, and stress, were incredibly difficult to heal. And, even after years of a variety of treatments, the brain was likely to fall back into old patterns, making it difficult for an individual to ever truly recover and, therefore, live a healthier, more balanced life. This belief, as logical as it may seem thanks to the complexity of the human brain and other physical systems, is, thankfully, false.
EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, not only helps individuals heal from “the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences”, but it does so quickly and effectively. So much more than an “alternative” therapy with little evidence to back its theories, EDMR has been practiced and studied for decades, proving its effectiveness across the board time and time again. Based on the proven belief that the human brain naturally wants to be in a state of lasting mental health, EMDR works to remove mental blocks that get in the way of this recalibration, ultimately activating the brain and body’s natural healing processes.
Understanding the Effectiveness of EMDR
Because of the numerous professional and controlled studies done on EMDR treatment, the incredible effectiveness of this unique treatment can no longer be denied. According to several studies discussed on the EMDR Institute’s website, “84%-90% of single-trauma victims no longer have post-traumatic stress disorder after only three 90-minute sessions”. And that’s just the beginning.
The results of these studies continue to astound the medical community with “100% of the single-trauma victims and 77% of multiple trauma victims no longer diagnosed with PTSD after only six 50-minute sessions” and ”77% of combat veterans free of PTSD in 12 sessions”. Because of this mounting evidence of EMDR’s effectiveness, the treatment is now recognized by the American Psychiatric Association, the World Health Organization, and the Depart of Defense as an “effective form of treatment for trauma and other disturbing experiences”.
While the science behind EMDR’s effectiveness is nuanced, the basic premise of the therapy is that the treatments, which use lateral eye movements, sound, and visualization techniques, completely “disarm belief systems” and, therefore, change all negative cognition occurring in the brain and body.
Will EMDR Help Depression, Anxiety and Stress?
The short answer is yes. With over thirty years of documented results from EMDR treatment sessions, EMDR therapy is considered effective for a wide range of mental issues, all with varying degrees of intensity, including “rape and sexual abuse, combat trauma, childhood trauma and neglect, life threatening accidents, and symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and substance abuse”.
Capable of being effective for individuals from a wide-range of backgrounds and at all stages of life, EMDR is a type of therapy that anyone struggling with depression, anxiety, and stress should consider.