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EMDR Europe is the official professional association of National EMDR Associations, establishing, maintaining and promoting the highest standards of excellence and integrity in EMDR therapy practice, research and education throughout Europe.
Whether you are a clinician, a professional who works with EMDR, a researcher or a member of a National EMDR Association, this website provides a resource on treatment, high standard accredited training, as well as research projects designed to advance the field of EMDR’s application in mental illness.
EMDR is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma.
It is a form of therapy that focuses on memories of traumatic and/or stressful experiences that can contribute to mental disorders or psychological problems and enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences.
Repeated studies show that by using EMDR therapy people can experience the benefits of psychotherapy that once took years to make a difference. EMDR psychotherapy uses a structured protocol for the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as well as other disorders and related past experiences that trigger emotions, beliefs, sensations, that are no longer functional for the well being.
To date, EMDR has helped millions of people of all ages relieve many types of psychological stress. In EMDR therapy, pathology and psychological as well as emotional difficulties are seen as based on unprocessed memories that are stored in the same way as they were experienced. Irrational beliefs or negative behaviors, are seen as reactions to past events, they are not the cause of the problem but rather the symptom. Using the detailed protocols and procedures taught in certified EMDR therapy trainings, clinicians learn how to help clients activate their natural capacity to process these experiences and overcome trauma in a constructive way.
EMDR can help accept experiences that have had a negative impact in life and move forward with a positive, hopeful perspective, while increasing a sense of personal strength, the ability to address difficulties assertively and be willing to engage in life and be free of making choices.
It is widely assumed that severe emotional pain requires a long time to heal. EMDR therapy shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma much as the body recovers from physical trauma. Given the worldwide recognition as an effective treatment of trauma, EMDR therapy is effective in treating the “everyday” memories that are the reason people have low self-esteem, feelings of powerlessness, and all the myriad problems that bring them in for therapy.
Therapists offering EMDR are licensed mental health professionals who have received specialized and certified training through approved EMDR Europe trainers and training organizations.
Developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a research-supported, integrative psychotherapy approach designed to treat symptoms of trauma and posttraumatic stress.
EMDR has been accepted as an effective form of treatment by several major health organizations including the World Health Organization (2013), the American Psychiatric Association (2004), and the U.S. Department of Defense (2017). Studies show that it is possible to alleviate distressing symptoms more rapidly with EMDR integrating it in the regular clinical practice with other approaches.
EMDR sessions follow a specific sequence of phases. Practitioners use bilateral stimulation, such as eye movements, to help the client process unresolved memories from adverse experiences. EMDR can be used to address any number of complaints and it is compatible with other types of therapy. Because discussing the details of a traumatic experience is not required in EMDR sessions, the anxiety associated with confronting and revealing those details may be alleviated.
Clinicians trained in other approaches (psychodynamic, cognitivism, cognitive-behavioural, family therapy, hypnosis, Gestalt, etc.) find that EMDR allows them to use what they already know regarding the client’s history: EMDR therapy helps identify the earlier memories that cause maladaptive defenses and intra-psychic mechanisms and facilitates the processing of those memories and experiences, that are likely causing dysfunctional behavior and irrational cognitions.
The EMDR Europe Research is built on a culture of excellence, compassion and groundbreaking scientific achievement.
EMDR Europe provides continuous updated information to clinicians and to the public on the latest research and applications of EMDR therapy.
In the last 28 years, EMDR has shown scientific evidence of predictable and rapid results in the treatment of many trauma based complaints. Most international guidelines for clinical practice include EMDR therapy as an effective treatment for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.
The beneficial effects of EMDR are powerful, cross cultural and equally effective in adults and children. Common psychological, physiological and psychosocial parameters are taken into account in EMDR psychotherapy. An enormous body of research is focused on exploring a better understanding of the efficiency and the mechanisms involved in the EMDR protocol.
An obvious field for the present and future research is neurobiology, neuro-imaging and the field of memory processing/memory retrieval/memory consolidation of disturbing experiences. The exact effect of bilateral stimulation is still the object of very active research and is not yet completely understood. The principle and mechanism of Adaptive Information Processing (AIP), and the relationship between mind and body, represent important areas of investigation for future research.
Investigators all are striving to gain more insight into the effectiveness of EMDR in the treatment of many diverse mental disorders, not just PTSD, by using cutting-edge approaches to research, in order to maximize findings and reach the highest level of scientific evidence.
Many anxiety disorders as well as depression, have proven to be effectively treated by EMDR, as reported in the publication of articles in international scientific journals. EMDR Europe is actively engaged in randomized controlled studies, which focus on EMDR treatment outcome measurements in diverse clinical conditions.
Francine’s last message to the European EMDR community
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Commendation Award to the President of EMDR Europe
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