EMDR Therapy

Ben has received extensive training in the use and application of EMDR from The EMDR Institute and incorporates the use of both theory and technique into his work.  Ben has worked with many clients and helped them put their trauma in the past.  Ben is also a member of the EMDR International Association and has completed all the requirements for certification in the application of EMDR.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a comprehensive, integrative psychotherapy approach. It contains elements of many effective psychotherapies in structured protocols that are designed to maximize treatment effects. These include psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral, interpersonal, experiential, and body-centered therapies.

During treatment, various procedures and protocols are used to address the entire clinical picture. One of the procedural elements is “dual stimulation” using either bilateral eye movements, tones or taps. During the reprocessing phases, the client attends momentarily to past memories, present triggers, or anticipated future experiences while simultaneously focusing on a set of external stimulus. During that time, clients generally experience the emergence of insight, changes in memories, or new associations. The clinician assists the client to focus on the appropriate material before initiation of each subsequent set.

EMDR’s unique aspect is an unusual component of bilateral stimulation of the brain, such as eye movement, bilateral sound, or bilateral tactile stimulation coupled with cognitions, visualized images and body sensation. EMDR also utilizes dual attention awareness to allow the individual to vacillate between the traumatic material and the safety of the present moment. This can help prevent retraumatization from exposure to the disturbing memory.

Research on the application of EMDR therapy continues, and several meta-analyses have been performed to further evaluate its efficacy in the treatment of PTSD.  A 2007 meta-analysis of 38 randomized controlled trials for PTSD treatment suggested that the first-line psychological treatment for PTSD should be Trauma-Focused CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) or EMDR.  Another recent review rated EMDR as an effective method for the treatment of PTSD, and the International Society of Stress Studies practice guidelines categorized EMDR as an evidence-based level A treatment for PTSD in adults, and adolescents.

If you are interested in learning more about EMDR Therapy in St. Paul MN please contact Ben Wolf today!