University Of Tasmania
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A review of the treatment components and effectiveness of EMDR in PTSD

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posted on 2023-05-27, 00:04 authored by Fraser, Jilli Maree
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is treated psychologically with exposure and cognitive restructuring techniques. Shapiro's (1995) Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) treatment for PTSD involves imaginal exposure, cognitive restructuring, and rapid eye movements (EMs). EMDR has been presented as an advance in the treatment of PTSD, based on the theory that rapid EMs facilitate the accelerated processing of trauma-related information, via the activation of physiological mechanisms which stimulate retrieval of positive memories and emotions (Shapiro, 1995). It is suggested in this literature review that Shapiro's EMs theories are unsound, and that claims that EMDR is superior to traditional PTSD treatments are premature, but it is proposed that EMDR may have therapeutic benefits in treating PTSD. It is suggested that the exposure and cognitive restructuring components of EMDR may be more critical than the EMs in reducing PTSD symptoms. However, the EMs may facilitate client acceptance of these components by distracting clients from their anxiety and reducing the intensity of imaginal exposure. Alternative theories of the role of eye movements in EMDR need to be investigated in future research.


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Copyright 1998 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Spine title: The effect of rapid eye movements on imaging in EMDR and treatment of PTSD. Thesis (M.Psych.)--University of Tasmania, 1999. Includes bibliographical references

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