EMDR Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is EMDR Therapy?
  • How Does EMDR Work?
  • EMDR Side Effects
  • Who is Francine Shapiro, Ph.D.


What is EMDR Therapy?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma.  EMDR is a set of standardized protocols that incorporates elements from many different treatment approaches.

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How Does EMDR Work

When a person recalls a distressing memory, the person can re-experience what they saw, heard, smelt, tasted or felt, which can be intense. By alternating left-right stimulation of the brain with eye movements, patients can stimulate the “frozen” information processing system. During the process, the distressing memories seem to lose their intensity so that the memories are less distressing and seem more like ‘ordinary’ memories.

EMDR Side Effects

EMDR side effects – emdr therapy has become an innovative option for treating or reducing conditions associated with anxiety, depression, and in some cases abuse or breach of trust suffered by some individuals. As with any treatment in life, there is always side effects or risk associated with the form of treatment. It might not be much, but it will exist in one way or the other.

These emdr side effect risks are more pronounced to those who practice self EMDR therapy and could make the mental disorder much more severe. One of the most common side effects associated with EMDR is the onset or increase in fear and distress. The process, as I can understand is designed for you to face your fear from the past and overcome it. Destroy it from that part of your memory.  Learn more

Who is Francine Shapiro, Ph.D.

Francine Shapiro, Ph.D., is the originator and developer of EMDR, which has been so well researched that it is now recommended as an effective treatment for trauma in the Practice Guidelines of the American Psychiatric Association, and those of the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Dr. Shapiro is a Senior Research Fellow Emeritus at the Mental Research Institute in Palo Alto, California, Executive Director of the EMDR Institute in Watsonville, CA, and founder and President Emeritus of the  Trauma Recovery EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Programs, a non-profit organization that coordinates disaster response and low fee trainings worldwide.  Learn more about the creator of EMDR at http://www.emdr.com/francine-shapiro-ph-d/