What is EMDR used for?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, or EMDR, is a form of therapy that has been growing in popularity as of late. For those who do not know what EMDR is, or what it can do for you, read on to learn more.

First, What is EMDR?

EMDR is a form of therapy that uses your eye movements and focusing on a moving object to eliminate any negative emotions you have with a certain trauma.

What is EMDR used for?

EMDR is used for various mental health issues. Let’s first discuss what it’s known for the best: PTSD.


EMDR is best known for treating post-traumatic stress disorder.

PTSD can come in many forms. Whether you’re a war vet or a survivor of sexual assault, the trauma you face may make it difficult for you to function at times.

With EMDR, you watch your therapist as they make a movement, and you must remember the memory that caused the trauma.

EMDR can make you tackle your emotions and learn to manage the symptoms of your trauma. With that said, there still needs to be more research on EMDR and how it can treat you.


EMDR may be useful for treating any addictions you may have. Your therapist may ask you to recall triggers that make it likely you’ll relapse or memories of how you became addicted.

Anxiety and Depression

Your EMDR therapist may ask for you to describe how your anxiety feels and the circumstances that surround it whenever you feel like you have an episode.

With depression, treatment tends to involve the same circumstances, with you describing how you feel.

Panic Disorder

If you have frequent panic attacks, EMDR may make it so that you experience less dread and worry about the next episode.

Eating Disorder

With eating disorders, a therapist may tackle your self-image issues as well as triggers that lead you to eat in an erratic manner.


EMDR may be beneficial for treating certain types of phobias. For example, you may be asked to think of what scares you while you watch your therapist go back and forth.


If you have chronic pain, EMDR may help you treat it. Sometimes, thoughts can make the pain worse, and EMDR helps you to avoid focusing on those troublesome thoughts that may cause an issue.

And More

EMDR may be used for treating other mental health issues, or for general improvement. If you have any questions, ask your therapist and they can help you decide if this form of therapy is appropriate for your situation.

What Can I Expect from My Therapy Session?

If you are going to see an EMDR therapist, you may not know what to expect. Here’s what may happen.

You Get Asked Your History

Your therapist needs your complete history before they can help you. This can sometimes be hard for you to reveal, especially if you have a history of trauma. However, every bit of your history is essential if you want to get help.


Your therapist may ask for you to perform some mental exercises to help you calm down. Some of them you can learn through health apps, and they are easy for you to apply.

The Treatment

EMDR treatment involves targeting a source of your issues, such as a traumatic memory. You picture the memory, tell how it makes you feel, and think of something negative and positive about yourself. The therapist asks how true you believe these things are. Then, you watch the EMDR stimulation.

Afterwards, you talk with your therapist about how you have seen improvement. You tend to repeat until you feel like you’ve resolved your issues.

Is it For Me?

EMDR is a newer form of therapy, and it’s still a little controversial. With that said, it may be beneficial, especially when alongside other forms of therapy. Speaking with EMDR therapists near you can help you decide if it’s for you.

EMDR is doable both in-person or online. Online therapy may be beneficial if your trauma makes it difficult for you to leave the house. Not only that, but you can be able to talk to a therapist about other issues you may have.

About the author

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Benjamin Noah

Benjamin is a professional blogger and marketer, who frequently writes about custom packaging, technologies, news and health to help businesses understand and adapt new ways to reach and inspire their target audience.