Lisa noticed her anxiety feeling most intense when driving her car – she was exceptionally aware of everything around her and felt a sense of dread when turning left, which is what she was doing when another car hit her.
Lisa had good social support. While she did not seem to feel traumatized by the accident, she found herself feeling significantly anxious about driving.
I talked to Lisa about a therapeutic technique called Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR). I explained that when we go to sleep at night, all of the experiences and information we have encountered during the day get put into the places in our brain where that information belongs.
However, when we experience trauma, our brain does not always know how to process that information, so it often gets stuck in the part of our brain that tells us to be more reactive/fearful about things.
How EMDR Therapy helped Lisa…
Lisa came back to me after her first EMDR session and told me that the first thing she noticed when getting into her car was that she had not realized how much tension she had been holding her body when in her car. She reported no longer feeling anxious when driving and the fear that had been creeping up in other areas was no longer there.
Do you find yourself reacting to traumatic events from the past? You might have done talk therapy or have talked to others about what occurred… but for some reason you find yourself feeling fearful about situations that remind you of that event. These triggers could be a noise, something you see, or a familiar situation. You find yourself reacting and feel out of control.
*composite of many clients
Reducing Your Triggers
Trauma is not selective in it’s impact, it doesn’t matter if trauma is large (like combat related trauma, sexual assault or near death experiences) or what seems to be not as significant (like a car accident, divorce, loss, or emotional abuse) triggers are often left behind as a result.
We have found that by using EMDR treatment, some of the triggers that people experience go away or are significantly improved.
People who have received this treatment share with us that it is easier to engage with their family and that they are able to move past some of the painful memories they have experienced. They express feeling more hopeful about their future and being able to enjoy participating in normal activities and living life again.
EMDR restores hope
EMDR Therapy is a powerful intervention as it reduces emotional and physical triggers related to traumatic events. It is able to release the emotions and heightened sensory perceptions that have been trapped in your brain and body.
EMDR is used for things other than trauma as well. It can be used to help reinforce positive emotions to help someone move forward through potentially stressful events. It can also be used for performance enhancement, treat addiction, and chronic pain.
Visit our EMDR Therapy Center to find out how we can help all ages, including children.
The good memories can return
What we find valuable about EMDR Therapy is that once the painful event has been processed, often the good memories that have been a part of that person’s life come back.
We have found that the negative beliefs people have internalized because of traumatic events are replaced with a positive belief that allows them to heal.