Adjunct EMDR | Dripping Springs
Collaboration: EMDR as Adjunct Therapy
We’ve all had those moments in therapy where we feel stuck or loop on issues related to negative life experiences. It can be discouraging for both the client and the therapist. Often times, when the primary therapist and client collaborate with an EMDR therapist, this partnership can help move treatment forward.
I partner with primary therapists and their clients to target their clients’ specific memories, body sensations, or limiting beliefs with EMDR. By narrowly targeting specific traumatic memories or intrusive material, brief adjunct EMDR can accelerate progress in traditional therapy, help the client and the primary therapist to resolve stuck points, and enrich their ongoing work.
Adjunct therapy does not replace or interrupt ongoing therapy; it is supplemental to the primary therapeutic relationship. With adjunct EMDR therapy, clients continue to receive treatment with their primary therapist. Usually adjunct therapy is short term (4-12 extended sessions) and desensitizes single incident trauma or simple phobias that interfere with the client’s therapeutic gains. Treatment is scheduled in an intensive format. The success of treatment is based on clearly defined goals for the EMDR therapist, defined in collaboration with the primary therapist and client.
CAN EMDR HELP ME?
It’s highly likely. EMDR can be effectively utilized for:
Resourcing: We will work to strengthen internal resources while soothing parts of you that feel limited. EMDR utilizes images, emotions, body sensations, and positive cognitions to increase feelings of calm, safety, and confidence.
Resolving relationship difficulties: Attachment-focused EMDR works to repair unmet development needs (often called attachment wounding) when we have experienced an absence of care/neglect or abuse.
Trauma recovery: While I often utilize EMDR for clients with big “T” trauma (e.g. a major car accident, assault), I also support clients with small “t” traumas (e.g. chronic or ongoing stressful conditions, such as interpersonal conflict, difficult parents, financial stress). One of the most overlooked aspects of small ‘t’ traumas is their accumulated effect. Multiple, compounded small ‘t’ traumas may lead to distress in the nervous system and trouble with emotional functioning.
What is EMDR?
EMDR is a form of adaptive information processing which helps the brain evolve from limiting beliefs. EMDR may avoid some of the long and difficult abreactive work often involved in the treatment of anxiety, panic attack, post-traumatic stress symptoms (such as intrusive thoughts, nightmares, and flashbacks), dissociative disorders, depression, phobias, identity crisis, and other adverse experiences.
Research in neuroplasticity demonstrates that our brain has the ability to change, create new neural pathways, and produce new neurons. Because the brain has this ability to change, we have the ability to change our way of thinking and improve mood. Neural pathways in the brain are strengthened with repetition. One way to describe this process is “neurons that fire together, wire together.” Repetition of an experience leads to changes within the brain’s structure and how the neurons process that experience. EMDR utilizes our brains’ neuroplasticity to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections, which allows the brain to compensate for injury and adjust to new situations. For more information on the benefits of EMDR, please visit my resource page.