CBT & EMDR Therapies Explained

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT)

CBT is a talking therapy that helps people look at the link between their thoughts, feelings and behaviour. The therapist and client work collaboratively to understand the situation experienced by the client. Once the formulation is established, we identify unhelpful thinking styles or identify patterns of behaviours that may be maintaining or influencing the problem and then explore the effects for the person when they make changes. Change is often not easy and together we explore the barriers or road blocks to recovery and identify how they can be addressed.

CBT is a practical "doing" therapy. Interventions/techniques will be explored in the session and utilised by the client outside of the session. It is recommended for a range of mental health needs by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (N.I.C.E) Guidelines.

Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR is an experiential therapy. NICE Guidelines for the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) advise that the most effective treatments are EMDR and CBT. The use of EMDR continues to be researched in other areas and can be helpful with a number of other needs such as

  • Phobia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Low self esteem
  • Performance enhancement
  • Pain
  • Childhood traumas

EMDR works on the belief that when something difficult happens to us (a trauma) we store the experience in our memory. Sometimes these memories can become very painful for people and affect their daily lives.

Memories can be stored within our mind in different ways. Some traumatic experiences are stored with the emotions and body sensations that were part of the event. When the memory is recalled it brings with it the pain and discomfort of the event. By reprocessing those experiences with the use of EMDR, the way the memory may be stored can change. The aim of the therapy is for the person to be able to recall those difficult events without feeling all the pain and discomfort. This can support change for the person in their current day to day life experiences. EMDR can focus upon the past, present and future events.

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