Dr. Sue Brown is excited to announce that she recently went to part one of an Eye Movement and Desensitization (EMDR) training. Developed by Francine Shapiro, EMDR is an evidence-based approach to treating trauma in children and adults. Trauma in children could be things like abuse, bullying, witnessing domestic violence, grief/loss, parental divorce, attachment problems, PTSD, and many other complicated issues.
How does EMDR work? Well, psychologists are not sure how any form of therapy works in the brain, but we do know that when someone is very upset, their brain can’t process information as it does normally. The thoughts, feelings, smells, and sounds that happened at the time of the trauma may get “stuck” in the brain. Remembering a trauma may feel as bad as going through it. This can have a lasting negative effect on people, and involuntary flashbacks may be triggered by everyday activities.
EMDR is thought to work physiologically and is similar to what happens during rapid eye movement sleep, the deep sleep during which people dream. It does not erase the trauma, but it does take away the upsetting feelings that are attached to it.
If you want to read more in-depth information on EMDR therapy, go to http://consults.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/16/expert-answers-on-e-m-d-r/.