EMDR Therapy

December 21, 2017

EMDR Therapy

EMDR Therapy Amsterdam, Almere, Den Haag, Nijmegen


What is EMDR?

EMDR ( Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)  Therapy is a powerful treatment that facilitates the processing of unprocessed memories associated with emotional and psychological distress. It is an 8-step treatment that uses bilateral stimulation (either through eye movements, tapping or sounds) to process memories to completion so that they no longer possess the power to create disturbing symptoms as disturbing thoughts, physical complains etc. 

What are unprocessed memories?

Unprocessed memories are memories that are stored in the memory circuit of the brain in a way that is highly disturbing; with the thoughts, images and bodily sensations that were present at the time of the event still intact.

EMDR therapy Amsterdam Den Haag Nijmegen Almere Psychologist Expat

Trauma is not defined by the magnitude of the event, but by how the memory is stored in the memory circuit. By contrast, processed memories seem to fade into the background and are not associated with much disturbance when recalled.

EMDR facilitates the processing of traumatic memories so that when they are recalled, they do not possess the power to re-traumatize.

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What does EMDR help with?

  • Trauma
  • Physical and/or verbal abuse
  • PTSD
  • Fears and Phobias
  • Panic Attacks and Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Childhood Trauma
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Disturbing Memories
  • Attachment Issues (childhood problems like neglect or abuse, leading to difficulties in current relationships etc.)
  • Chronic Pain and Stress Reduction
  • Insomnia, Somnambulism and Sleeping Problems
  • Fear of Success/performance enhancement
  • Grief and Loss
  • Low self-worth
  • Burnout
  • Eating disorders
  • Addiction
  • Body dysmorphic disorder
  • Neglect

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EMDR Therapy Amsterdam den Haag Nijmegen Almere Expat PsychologistWhat Happens in EMDR Therapy?

EMDR involves helping the patient to change the attention process, shifting focus to what is seen while noticing negative thoughts, emotions or bodily sensations.

The purpose is to unblock difficulties in informational processes allowing for rapid emotional processing of traumatic events or beliefs.

In the beginning, we will take a long and thorough history of how your life has been so far and assess together which difficult times you want to work on. After that, the experience is radically different from traditional Therapy. While your brain is asked to “free associate”, to spontaneously go where the difficult (and positive) memories are, there is far less talking. We will not analyse or interpret this, but just facilitate the process by administering short sets of the so called Bilateral Stimulations, i.e. eye movements, hand taps or sounds.

Between each set we make sure you remain present in the here and now, and, while there might be a lot of emotion coming up, we will make sure together that you feel safe and held. Between session, we will check together what might have come up and how you have been feeling.

Therefore, the trauma can be alleviated swiftly, depending on the level of severity of the issue but usually within 8 sessions and a maximum of 15 sessions for a severe issue, sometimes less, occasionally mare; any session of EMDR Therapy has the length of 90 minutes.

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Scientific Research on EMDR

Boudewyns, P. A., Stwertka, S. A., Hyer, L. A., Albrecht, S. A., & Sperr, E. V. (1993, February). Eye movement desensitization for PTSD of combat: A treatment outcome pilot study. The Behavior Therapist, 16(2), 30-33.

Sine, L. F., & Vogelmann-Sine, S. (1996, June). Assessing for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing appropriateness and readiness and determining EMDR targets. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the EMDR International Association, Denver, CO.

Birnbaum, A. (2009). A written workbook for individual or group Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. In M. Luber (Ed.), Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing scripted protocols: Basics and special situations, (pp. 297-336). New York: Springer, pp. 450.

Borstein, S. S. (2009, August). The effectiveness of brief adjunctive Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing: A pilot study. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Eye Movement Desensitization and ReprocessingInternational Association, Atlanta, GA.

Shapiro, E. (2009). Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing treatment of recent trauma. Journal of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Practice and Research, 3(3), 141-151.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Institute Research Studies: http://emdr.com/refs.htm

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EMDR Therapy Locations

EMDR Therapy Locations in Amsterdam, Almere, Den Haag and Nijmegen

Feel free to contact me for an intake session via telephone at 06.13932187 or by the Contact Form below.
We are Italian and English speaking Health Care Psychologists and Certificated Therapists for Expats and our main office is located in Amsterdam, and we practice also in Almere, Nijmegen and Den Haag at the following addresses:


Van Eeghenlaan 27
1071 EN Amsterdam


P.J. Oudweg 4
1314 CH Almere


Nieuwegracht 29
3512 LD Utrecht


Raamweg 4


Oranjesingel 24
6511 NV Nijmegen

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Feel free to contact us to take an appointment.


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