Pittsburgh's Trusted Leader In EMDR therapy
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EMDR therapy also called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is used to deal with upsetting or traumatic memories. Negative emotions, feelings, and behaviors are generally caused by unprocessed or unresolved earlier experiences. The failure of your memory to appropriately remember upsetting life events is the cause of many psychological issues. These experiences are said to be blocked or unprocessed and require assistance to do so. One method of unblocking these distressing memories is through EMDR therapy.

The goal of EMDR therapy is to reprocess negative emotions and body sensations that are holding you back from living a healthy and rewarding life. EMDR therapy helps your brain process traumatic or stressful memories in a way that is healing, safe, and therapeutic.

EMDR therapy is not talk therapy or psychodynamic therapy. The processing aspect of EMDR therapy refers to the creation of a learning environment that enables problematic events to be properly processed in the brain so they are no longer triggering a fight, flight, or freeze response in your body. EMDR therapy assists you in learning from your experiences and aids in the elimination of the improperly stored feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations associated with the stressful or traumatic event.


Providing The Support You Need To Make An Informed Decision

EMDR is a comprehensive approach and may be used to treat almost any symptom or disorder including:

  • PTSD and Complex Trauma
  • Panic Attacks
  • Anxiety
  • Addictions
  • Depression
  • Phobias
  • Eating Disorders
  • Obsessions and Compulsions
  • Low Self Esteem and many other mental health disorders

You will concentrate on a particular event after you and your therapist determine that EMDR therapy is a good fit and start working together. You’ll start by concentrating on a negative perception of the incident, a limiting belief, and physical symptoms. Add a subsequent optimistic conviction that would denote a resolution.


Your therapist will lead you through a series of side-to-side eye movements, sounds, or taps while you are concentrating on the event, asking you to pay attention to any thoughts that arise. You could go through changes in insight or in the images, feelings, and beliefs you have about the incident. You have complete authority to halt at any time if necessary. The event is repeated until the eye movements, noises, or tapping stop becoming upsetting.

The number of sessions you’ll need varies and depends on the type and complexity of the event. Your therapist may also use EMDR therapy in combination with other modalities.

EMDR therapy is covered by insurance, since it is an evidence-based form of treatment.  We provide affordable self-pay options too.

Once the entire EMDR process is complete, you should experience permanent symptom reduction. Some individuals require additional EMDR later in life as more life events occur and need reprocessing.

People respond to EMDR therapy in very diverse ways. Following an EMDR session, some people report no immediate change, while others say their dreams, thoughts, and feelings regarding the trauma they are reprocessing have decreased. After an EMDR processing session, you could feel “drained” both physically and emotionally. Prior to your next session, your therapist will ask you to keep a journal of any fresh ideas, recollections, dreams, feelings, or bodily sensations.

EMDR therapy is typically every week. However, it can still be effective every other week, with slower progress. Emerging research establishes the effectiveness of EMDR Intensives. EMDR Intensives involve administering EMDR therapy several hours a day for multiple days in a row.


The use of EMDR in co-occurring substance use and addiction treatment finds root in the fact that trauma is a common experience when in active addiction. Addiction is often tied to a past trauma that resulted in the substance misuse starting.

This theory also believes that by treating the core reason for the substance use, usually trauma, the need for the substance will be reduced in severity and intensity. 

This is not your average treatment for addiction. Very little is asked of the client in between sessions and you will not have to force yourself to stop using a substance or adhere to a program that does not work for you, as with many traditional treatments. You will literally just stop wanting to do the behavior and the addiction is broken in the brain so relapse is less likely.


Addictions include:

Any illegal substance
Codependency- Relationship Addiction
Any other behavior determined to be addictive in nature.


If you or someone you love struggle with a traumatic history, a substance use disorder, or addiction, you may find benefit from EMDR. More and more treatment centers are offering EMDR to treat the underlying causes of addiction. If this is something that you think you may benefit from or you are unsure about, contact a treatment provider. They can discuss available treatment options with you.


Better Than Talk Therapy

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) treatment is a well-researched, efficient psychotherapy approach that has been shown to aid in PTSD and trauma symptom recovery. Current research demonstrates that EMDR therapy is effective in treating conditions like anxiety, depression, OCD, chronic pain, addictions, and other upsetting life events. This support comes from positive clinical outcomes.


EMDR therapy does not require talking in detail about the distressing issue or completing homework between sessions. EMDR therapy, rather than focusing on changing the emotions, thoughts, or behaviors resulting from the distressing issue, allows the brain to resume its natural healing process.


EMDR therapy is designed to resolve unprocessed traumatic memories in the brain. For many clients, EMDR therapy can be completed in fewer sessions than other psychotherapies.  


EMDR Therapy Pittsburgh- offering EMDR Therapy in the Pittsburgh and surrounding areas for all ages.  The following video is courtesy of EMDRIA International.