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EMDR in Wolverhampton, West Midlands

Lewis Psychology is a Wolverhampton based psychology service and multi-award winning ethical business.  We and the only counselling and psychotherapy service in Wolverhampton to gain Service Accreditation status with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). BACP Service Accreditation demands the highest standards of practice in the counselling and psychotherapy profession and is considered by many to be the highest honour in the field.

What Is EMDR?

Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of psychotherapy that was developed by Francine Shapiro to resolve the development of trauma-related memories caused by exposure to distressing events such as rape, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), physical abuse or neglect, surgical trauma and road traffic accidents. Since its original development, EMDR is also increasingly used to help individuals with other issues such as performance anxiety, grief, phobias,  panic disorders, pain, eating disorders, intrusive thoughts, health anxiety, sexual dysfunction and a wide range of other issues.

Overview – about EMDR

EMDR is a complex method of psychotherapy which integrates many of the successful elements of a range of therapeutic approaches, and combines them with eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation in ways which stimulate the brain’s information processing system.

Normally, the individual processes traumatic experiences naturally. However, when a person is severely traumatised, either by an overwhelming event or by being repeatedly subjected to distress, this healing process may become overloaded, leaving the original disturbing experiences unprocessed. These unprocessed memories can be stored in the brain in a “raw” form where they can be continually re-evoked when experiencing events that are similar to the original experience. EMDR utilises the body’s natural healing ability and allows the brain to heal psychological problems at the same rate as the rest of the body heals physical ailments. Because EMDR allows the mind and body to heal at the same rate, treatment can be rapid. The number of sessions required for EMDR treatment, however, will vary according to the complexity of the issues being dealt with. In general, the more isolated the traumatic memory being treated, the shorter the treatment tends to be.

The research and evidence base

EMDR therapy is recognised as an evidence-based practice because it has been scientifically evaluated, demonstrated to be effective, and often cited as an effective treatment in national and international treatment guidelines. The evidence base for the effectiveness and efficiency of EMDR, in particular for treating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and trauma-related problems, is extremely strong. As such EMDR is acknowledged as effective in the treatment of PTSD by The UK DOH National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) March 2005 in the Guidelines for the Management of PTSD.

The eight stages of EMDR treatment

treatment There are eight stages to EMDR, which are detailed below.  Please note that EMDR is an eight stage treatment and not an eight session treatment – therefore several stages can be completed during one session.

Phase 1: History and Treatment Planning. The Intake Interview is conducted to evaluate the client’s presenting issues, self-soothing skills, and readiness for reprocessing, and to develop treatment goals.

Phase 2: Preparation. Clients are prepared for EMDR processing of targets by setting expectations for the course of treatment and identifying coping skills for use during and between treatment sessions.

Phase 3: Assessment. Here, the target for EMDR reprocessing is accessed by stimulating the primary aspects of the memory. Baseline measurements are taken of the images, cognitions, emotions, and bodily sensations associated with the targeted trauma/incident.

Phase 4: Desensitization. This stage involves reprocessing the target memory network by activating related neurological channels of association. The therapist and client engage in sets of bilateral stimulation (eye movements, audio tones or taps).

Phase 5: Installation. Strengthening and enhancing associations to positive memory networks are put into place.

Phase 6: Body Scan. This stage reprocesses any residual physical manifestations of the memory and involves accessing the memory and the positive cognition (belief), scanning the body, and reprocessing any sensations.

Phase 7: Closure. In this stage there is reorientation of the focus of attention to bring closure to the reprocessing. The client is stabilised and the session closed, with reorientation to the present. A plan is developed for the time between sessions.

Phase 8: Re-evaluation. Phase 8 is often conducted at the beginning of a subsequent treatment session. In other words, in the midst of a course of treatment, the therapist will conduct the re-evaluation at the outset of an individual therapy session to revisit the impact of previous sessions. Re-evaluation ensures clinical attention and follow up of every EMDR treatment session to evaluate specific target memories, identify other relevant associations that may have developed as a result of reprocessing, and evaluate progress.

In addition to bilateral stimulation courses of EMDR treatment can include customised procedures and protocols including self-soothing techniques, skill building, and enhancing access to positive networks.

What issues can EMDR address?

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Anxiety
  • Combat trauma
  • Rape
  • Road traffic accident
  • Workplace accident
  • Childhood trauma
  • Stage fright
  • Grief
  • Fear of dentists
  • Phobias

EMDR as a treatment for anxiety

Many people associate EMDR with the treatment of trauma however, EMDR can be used to treat numerous issues including anxiety. The EMDR approach to anxiety allows a therapist to directly intervene at a neurophysiological level to facilitate the reworking of the stored dysfunctional memory that is currently expressed as anxiety.

EMDR processing can be applied to targets such as your first and worst episodes of anxiety, life events related to anxiety and anticipated anxiety attacks. You would also work on current triggers related to anxiety in the present and prepare for future experiences. Using EMDR we would work towards the elimination of anxiety and avoidance behaviours, insight about symptoms and return to normal daily functioning. 

Meet our EMDR therapist

EMDR is a complex and powerful therapy that should only be performed by qualified and accredited psychological health professionals. Our EMDR therapist is qualified psychotherapist who has achieved senior accreditation staus with the BACP. Meet our EMDR practitioner.

Make an appointment for EMDR

If you would like to arrange an appointment or require further information regarding our EMDR service please telephone our Wolverhampton practice on: 01902 827808.  Alternatively fill out our online contact form and we will get back to you.  We are now open seven days a week. 

Fees and Payment

EMDR is £85 for an hour appointment. We accept a variety of payment methods including cash, bank transfer or credit/debit card.

Initial telephone discussion

You are welcome to contact us for a 15 minute initial telephone discussion.  This will be with a BACP senior accredited psychotherapist and EMDR practitioner who will use this time to gain an understanding of how you could benefit from the services offered at Lewis Psychology. During this discussion the practitioner will help guide you towards the service that is most suitable. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions and find out more about the process. At this time you can decide whether you would like to book an appointment however the consultation is conducted entirely without obligation on your part.