How EMDR Can Help Traumatic Memories with Dr. DaLene Forester Thacker

Dr. DaLene is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and licensed Professional Clinical Counselor. She is a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist, an expert in traumatic stress, and is certified in EMDR. She has a private practice specializing in the treatment of eating disorders, PTSD, and anxiety disorders in Redding, California.

Main Questions Asked:

  • What is EMDR? How was EMDR developed?
  • What does an EMDR session look like?
  • Is there any research on EMDR? Is it a valid therapy?
  • What can EMDR treat?
  • How can we find an EMDR practitioner that’s properly trained?
  • Can you give us a real world example of an EMDR case you’ve treated?
  • Can EMDR be done over the internet?

Key Points made by Dr. DaLene:

  • EMDR stands for eye movement desensitization and reprocessing – a psychotherapy technique that is simple looking but incredibly complex.
  • EMDR was developed by Francine Shapiro after thinking of a traumatic memory, and noticing the patterns of how her eyes fluttered. She focused on the eye movements and the traumatic memory dissipated.
  • EMDR really gets to the root cause of traumas and traumatic memories.
  • Whether traumas are big or small EMDR can be very helpful.
  • EMDR always starts with a thorough history so the clinician can figure out what memories need to be addressed.
  • The patient sits across from the therapist, and the therapists helps guide the patient’s eye movements – the patient follows the therapist’s finger or a wand – while the patient remembers a specific memory.
  • EMDR is one of the most researched treatments for trauma.
  • The World Health Organization says EMDR is one of the best therapies for trauma memories.
  • The eye movements cause a calming of the limbic system – the emotional center of the brain. This has been proven with SPECT scans of the brain.
  • Research on EMDR can help bulimia – the study she’s done cured 50% of bulimics.
  • EMDR is a validated therapy for PTSD – post traumatic stress disorder.
  • It can also help anxiety disorders, addictions, and eating disorders.
  • Dalene gives a real example of a case she treated in her private practice where the patient was sexually abused as a child. With EMDR she was able to fully recover.
  • It is not recommended to do EMDR sessions over the internet or remotely until the patient is in a really good place mentally/emotionally. Tapping into deep difficult emotions needs to be done in person in case the patient needs extra one-on-one help.

Resources Mentioned:

Find a properly trained EMDR therapist– USA

Find a properly trained EMDR therapist – Canada

Dr. Dalene’s Private Practice (530) 245-9221

EMDR Training for Professionals

Book – Reclaim Your Energy and Feel Normal Again

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