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EMDR Therapy

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Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy, also known as EMDR, has recently been growing in popularity as a form of treatment for those struggling with addiction. It is particularly effective in helping some individuals process and heal from traumatic experiences that may have contributed to their addiction. Traumatic experiences are often at the root of addiction, so it’s essential to heal that deep-seated pain while trying to take on addiction.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, Skywood Outpatient offers an EDMR therapy program in Royal Oak MI. Contact us at 248.617.6237 today to learn how eye movement desensitization and reprocessing may be able to help you address your mental health and addiction issues. Let us help you on your journey to healing and recovery.

What Is Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy?

EMDR therapy is a type of psychotherapy that helps individuals process and heal from traumatic experiences. It involves the use of bilateral stimulation (such as eye movements, tapping, or auditory tones) to help the brain process and integrate traumatic memories. Often, individuals will report a decrease in negative emotions and beliefs related to the traumatic experience after EMDR therapy.

In EDMR therapy, a therapist will often guide the patient through visualizations and flashbacks, helping them process and cope with past traumas. They will typically ask the patient to focus on specific emotions or sensations associated with the traumatic event and encourage them to release any pent-up negative energy. The goal is for the patient to eventually be able to think about their trauma without experiencing intense emotional distress. The eyes are used as a tool in this therapy because they are linked to the amygdala, an area of the brain responsible for fear and emotional memories. Tapping, which can be used alternative to eye movement, is also often used as a way to release stored emotional energy.

In addiction recovery, EMDR can be used to address past traumas that may have contributed to the development of addiction. It can also be used to address triggers and emotional responses related to addiction, as well as any negative self-beliefs or thought patterns that may contribute to addictive behavior. EMDR can be a difficult and emotionally intense process, but it has been shown to be highly effective in reducing the symptoms of trauma.

EDMR Therapy for Addiction

While you may have heard about EDMR therapy being used for trauma, have you considered it as a treatment for addiction? EMDR can treat individuals struggling with addiction by helping them process and heal from any underlying traumatic experiences. Many individuals struggling with addiction have also experienced trauma, whether it be physical or emotional abuse, neglect, natural disasters, accidents, etc. These past traumas can play a significant role in their addiction and must be addressed in order for true healing to occur.

Addiction and trauma are connected in the following ways:

  • Traumatic events or experiences can lead to self-medication
  • Substance use can lead to traumatic events
  • Trauma and addiction often co-occur

EMDR helps individuals process and heal from any past trauma that may be contributing to their addictive behaviors. This, in turn, can help the individual address and overcome their addiction by arming them with the tools and coping mechanisms they need to cope with triggers and difficult emotions instead of turning to substance use.

Benefits of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy

Some benefits of EDMR therapy include the following:

  • It can provide relief from symptoms related to trauma or addiction
  • It can help individuals process and heal from past traumatic experiences
  • It can address negative beliefs and thought patterns contributing to addictive behaviors
  • It can provide tools for coping with triggers and difficult emotions
  • It can be integrated with other forms of therapy and treatment for addiction recovery

EMDR therapy can help a wide range of mental health issues, including addiction, PTSD, anxiety, and depression.