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What is EMDR Therapy?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an extensively researched, effective psychotherapy method proven to help people recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and panic disorders.

How does EMDR therapy affect the brain?

Our brains have a natural way to recover from traumatic memories and events. This process involves communication between the amygdala (the alarm signal for stressful events), the hippocampus (which assists with learning, including memories about safety and danger), and the prefrontal cortex (which analyzes and controls behavior and emotion). While many times traumatic experiences can be managed and resolved spontaneously, they may not be processed without help.

Stress responses are part of our natural fight, flight, or freeze instincts. When distress from a disturbing event remains, the upsetting images, thoughts, and emotions may create feelings of overwhelm, of being back in that moment, or of being “frozen in time.” EMDR therapy helps the brain process these memories, and allows normal healing to resume. The experience is still remembered, but the fight, flight, or freeze response from the original event is resolved.”

Above information obtained from the EMDRIA website.  For more information, visit

EMDR and Play Therapy

The language of children is play (Landreth, 2002) and relationship is the primary change agent in play therapy (Schaefer and Drewes, 2013). Often times our experiences are stored in the body.  EMDR works to heal the brain and body from the inside out.   Partnering play therapy with EMDR is a powerful way to support children in healing the brain and body’s response to a myriad of life experiences.