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EMDR Therapy Program


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EMDR Therapy programSearching for addiction therapy options in Georgia? Located in the same town as the University of Georgia, family-owned Athens Addiction Recovery Center may offer the options you’re looking for. As a sister facility to Serenity Grove Recovery, Athens Recovery specializes in providing LGBTQ-friendly outpatient addiction treatment programs with lifelong continuing care. One of the forms of therapeutic care these programs can include is eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy.

EMDR therapy is ideal for the treatment of trauma-induced problems. Although it’s typically used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), EMDR therapy can also help treat anxiety and depression, as well as other forms of psychological distress, like substance use disorders. If you’re looking for addiction therapy in Georgia, contact Athens Addiction Recovery Center today. Call 844.959.4998 or reach out to our team online.

What Is EMDR Therapy?

EMDR therapy uses sensory input to help people deal with, overcome, and recover from emotional distress and trauma. Developed in 1987, this type of therapeutic care remains a popular way to effectively treat mental health disorders. The goal of EMDR therapy is to unblock emotional processes that have become stagnated by distress.

Normally, the brain influences emotions by:

  • Balancing and regulating neurotransmitters that dictate mood
  • Helping to accurately perceive and react to emotional stimuli
  • Managing memories that drive and inform emotional well-being
  • Regulating parts of the limbic system responsible for different emotions

However, trauma and psychological distress can interfere with these processes. The interference causes anxiety, depression, nightmares, obsessive thoughts, and panic that typically lead to poor emotional regulation. By unblocking these emotional processes, EMDR therapy can help a client, in a sense, reprogram their brain. With the brain reprogrammed, a client can:

  • Better regulate distressing emotions
  • Deal with traumatic memories
  • Develop new perspectives on distressing situations
  • Ease anxiety and depression
  • Improve their self-esteem
  • Overcome fear and pain

How Does EMDR Therapy Work?

EMDR therapy uses bilateral stimulation, as well as a client’s senses, to help a client overcome trauma and psychological distress. Even though EMDR therapy primarily uses eye movements, it can also use hand tapping and audio stimulation. As a client dives into traumatic memories, they also focus on a stimulus that switches or moves from left to right. This stimulation mimics the eye movement that happens in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.

EMDR therapy involves attention to three time periods: the past, present, and future. These periods are addressed using an eight-phase approach:

  • History and treatment planning: The therapist evaluates the client and develops a treatment plan. They identify possible targets for EMDR processing, including distressing memories and current situations that cause emotional distress.
  • Preparation: The therapist ensures that the client has several ways of handling emotional distress. The therapist may teach the client a variety of imagery and stress reduction techniques they can use during and between sessions.
  • Assessment, desensitization, installation, and body scan: In these stages of EMDR therapy, a target is identified and processed. These involve the client identifying three things: a vivid visual image related to the target memory, a negative belief about self, and related emotions and body sensations.
  • Closure: The therapist asks the client to keep a log. This log should document related material that may arise. It serves to remind the client of the self-calming activities that were mastered in phase two.
  • Reevaluation: The therapist and the client examine the progress made. If the client has multiple traumas, this phase will identify those areas and the process will begin again with a new target memory.

Ready to Learn More About Athens Recovery’s EMDR Therapy Option?

Are you searching for addiction therapy in Georgia? Contact Athens Addiction Recovery Center today by calling 844.959.4998 or reaching out to our team online.