top of page
Rock Maze

What happens in an EMDR session?

Once a plan has been created with you after learning about our history, together we identify specific experiences to be processed. Before beginning with EMDR, we ensure that you have the resources to cope and we assess readiness through a calm place exercise. I introduce you to the different ways to receive Dual Awareness Stimulation (DAS)- eye movement, tapping, hand buzzies, or auditory tones). EMDR is a phased protocol, and it may take one session to set up the EMDR target before processing can begin. When ready for processing, you think about the upsetting memory – and I or you begin DAS. This 'back-and-forth' or bilateral sensory stimulation reactivates the information processing system of the brain, but also helps you stay present in the moment to help you understand 'that was then and this is now' (Dual Awareness). In EMDR therapy, a person’s healing abilities are activated, and the body/mind balance is restored through the alleviation of emotional, behavioural and psychological symptoms. EMDR therapy helps you sit with the feelings and sensations in your body stemming from the trauma so that you can process the memory and heal from it. EMDR therapy is a robust protocol that is adhered to, with specific steps to achieve before moving on to the next phase. This comprehensive therapy helps to desensitize the trauma content, process the emotions and thoughts and works to address the impact to the body. With my additional knowledge about somatic experiencing and polyvagal theory, I can support a holistic approach to your healing.

EMDR Therapy

EMDR therapy is recognized as a highly effective therapy for the permanent elimination of the symptoms of stress and trauma. This innovative and powerful psychotherapy model was developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro in 1987 primarily to address the impact of trauma and PTSD. EMDR has been rigorously been studied and results have been published substantiating EMDR’s efficacy. Numerous International organizations have endorsed EMDR:

The International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies

US Department of Defense/Veterans Affairs

The American Psychological Association

The American Psychiatric Association

The World Health Organization


EMDR is a regulated psychotherapy model, involving certification and ongoing consultation. I am a member of EMDR Canada, and as a trained EMDR Therapist, I provide this therapy to adults, and adolescents (*case by case basis for youth 12-16yrs old).

EMDR is used effectively for all traumatic experiences such as assault, motor vehicle accidents, war and torture, natural disasters, victims of crime, sexual assault and childhood abuse/neglect. It is also increasingly used to treat complicated life adversities such as anxiety and panic, performance issues, addictions, phobias, stress, eating disorders, depression, anger, bullying, conflict, grief/loss, and chronic pain. To date, EMDR has helped an estimated half a million people of all ages relieve many types of psychological distress. EMDR is rapid, safe, and effective.

EMDR essentially mobilizes the brain's own healing abilities. When bad things happen, they happen first to the body, then the emotions kick in, and then the brain starts to process the experience. You 'sleep on it', you think about it, you get support from friends & family, and after some time has passed, while you still remember the negative experience, you no longer feel upset about it. This is an example of the brain working the way it should. However, sometimes the processing gets stuck, and you don't have peace and experience distress. This is where EMDR comes in;  it desensitizes and reprocesses negative memories and experiences. EMDR is an excellent way of releasing the pain from the past, to free up your resources for the present and future.

It's weird, but it works!
For more information about EMDR Therapy, including helpful analogies, visit EMDR Canada

bottom of page