How Many Sessions Does EMDR Therapy Take? – Basic FAQ’s

How Many Sessions Does EMDR Therapy Take

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is one effective method used to treat posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It works by gradually fading the memories of a traumatic experience and setting the victim on the path of recovery. A lot of people who take this approach usually ask: how many sessions does EMDR therapy take?

How Many Sessions Does EMDR Therapy Take?
How Many Sessions Does EMDR Therapy Take?

How Many Sessions Does EMDR Therapy Take?

If you are asking this question, you have found the right post. It will take you back to the brief history of EMDR and the number of sessions you need for full recovery. You will also know the various phases of this treatment method and what EMDR is

An Overview of EMDR

EMRD was first developed in 1987 and since then has been widely used to heal PTSD. Unlike other trauma treatments, EMDR taps into the actual memory when working with trauma. It is based on the premise that the traumatic experience was not processed completely, hence it keeps coming back to the victim. EMDR creates the room to reprocess the memory and alter how the brain thinks of it. With a shift of how the brain remembers the memory, the victim is set on the path to recovery. This is one of the reasons why emdr is considered to be a relatively faster PTSD treatment once one has been diagnosed with PTSD and has been widely adopted across the globe. 

The Recommended Sessions of EMDR for Full Recovery

To get better results from EMDR, the pioneers of this treatment recommend one to two sessions each week. For traumatic experiences that are less severe, a session each week would be adequate. For those who are heavily impacted by the past experience, experts suggest you get two sessions within each week. In total number of sessions, it should be between 6 and 12 sessions. However, there are those who recover faster while others require more than those 12 sessions. 

The Phases of EMDR

The treatment starts with gathering the patient’s history and then creating a treatment plan. This phase establishes triggers and the targets for the treatment plan. What follows is preparation for the sessions and getting the patient ready for the treatment plan. 

Assessment is when the specific memory is activated. The therapist does an assessment of how the patient reacts emotionally and cognitively. This forms the basis on which the treatment is administered. The next phase is desensitization, which uproots the old memory and plants a new cognitive direction of thoughts. The healing process begins here.

Next is installation, which reinforces the positive cognition. It goes hand in hand with body scan that tests the physical response of the patients to the old memory. It helps identify any residual distress and paves way for treating it entirely. 

Towards the end, there is the closure phase. It gives the patient a safety assurance that the bad era is over. This is also revisited on the final phase of re-evaluation. It aims at making sure that no distress is left and that the healing process was complete and successful. 

Bottom Line 

So, how many sessions does EMDR therapy take? This depends on the individual and the specific trauma. Less traumatic memories will take fewer sessions. It is also important that a re-evaluation is done after the last session to leave no doubt on the healing process. This sort of therapy can also help college students if they have dealt with some sort of trauma in the past and need some sort of counselling.