How Does EDMR help with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD) after Motor Vehicle Accidents?
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD) is a kind of disorder that may develop after experiencing or witnessing a serious trauma e.g. car accident. For many individuals suffering from PTSD following a serious MVA, there are various signs that you may experience. But, the great news is, PTSD is treatable. And, EDMR therapy is among the ideal treatment for patients with PSTD after a car accident.
The Symptoms may include the following: remembering the trauma, refusal to do things related to motor vehicle accidents (e.g. avoidance to driving). They can also feel numbing of emotional responsiveness (e.g. with the absence of emotions). Also, they can feel detachment from others. They may be startled easily. In addition, they can’t sleep well due to nightmares and irritability, or excessive worrying.
As we can notice, most of those responses are our body’s mechanism to protect us from future accidents, it may make our lives miserable especially when you have so much fear and have trouble sleeping.
What is EDMR?
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EDMR) therapy is a kind of interactive psychotherapy used in treating distress or disturbing life experiences associated with traumatic memories such as with trauma and PSTD. Developed in 1987, EDMR is a treatment option for PSTD, guided by the Adaptive Information Processing Model.
During an EDMR, the therapist will use the patient’s fast, rhythmic eye movements. And, these eye movements lessen the impact of emotionally charged recollections of past traumatic experiences such as having a car accident.
What Does EDMR Therapy Help with PSTD?
EDMR is believed to be effective because remembering unpleasant experiences is typically less emotionally upsetting when emotion is distracted. It enables you to be exposed to memories with no psychological response. Undergoing this type of therapy will help you to lessen the impact of your traumatic experiences.
What to Expect During an EDMR Therapy?
In an EDMR session, your therapist will move their fingers in front of your face and urge you to follow those movements using your eyes. Simultaneously, the EMDR therapist will ask you to remember a distressing incident. Also, it may contain the accompanying emotions and bodily sensations.
Then, the therapist will gradually shift you to think of pleasant or good memories. The EDMR therapy session may last up to 90 minutes. In addition, they may use other types of stimuli such as hand-tapping and audio stimulation.
An EDMR therapy session involves dealing with three time periods of an individual: his past, present, and future. And, in dealing with these time events, the therapist will use an eight-phase treatment approach which is the following:
It involves, taking the history of a client (his traumatic experiences) assessing his readiness for an EDMR therapy, and developing a treatment plan.
The therapist ensures that the client has a variety of methods to deal with emotional discomfort throughout the second phase of therapy. The therapist may give the client a range of imagery and stress reduction methods that he or she may employ between sessions.
Third to Sixth Phase:
It involves a client identifying a clear visual image associated with memories, negative beliefs about his or herself, and accompanying emotions and bodily sensations. In addition, in these phases, the client will identify positive beliefs. Then the therapist will help the client in rating the positive belief and the intensity of negative feelings. After that, the client needs to focus on key things; the image, negative belief, and bodily sensations while the therapist will apply the stimulation such as eye movements, tapping, and use of tones. The type of stimuli and length may vary depending on the results of the client’s assessment.
After each set of stimulation, the therapist tells the client to let go of any thoughts, feelings, images, memories, and sensations. He will select the next emphasis based on the client’s feedback. Throughout the session, these repeating sets with directed attention occur. If the client is still distress, the therapist will follow a set of standard procedures.
If the client experiences no distress at all, he or she will be instructed to recall their chosen positive belief at the start of the session. So the client may concentrate on the positive thought throughout the following round of traumatic experiences.
The therapist will ask the client to document his or her experiences during the week which includes any emotions or events that he or she experiences.
At this stage, the developments will be measure.
EDMR is not only effective in treating PTSD but also on the following conditions:
- Sleep Disruption
Need Help with PSTD After a Motor Vehicle Accident?
At Evergreen Rehab & Wellness – Coquitlam, we have clinical counsellors that can help you with PSTD and trauma through EDMR therapy. If you feel that you can’t sleep well, or the motor vehicle accident affects your daily life, it’s time to get help. In addition, if you have a family member or friend that needs help after a motor vehicle accident, Evergreen Rehab & Wellness – Coquitlam is a one-stop healthcare provider for MVA patients. We accept patients with active ICBC claims.