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EMDR for PTSD

Serious events can occur in a person's life. These can range from an accident, (sexual) abuse to violence or war situations. Such a situation is called a trauma and takes a while to process. Processing consists of giving the trauma a place and then getting on with your life again. Occasionally, you may still look back on the event in question with emotion, but it has been given a place. When you do not succeed in giving a traumatic experience a place to live, we speak of an unresolved trauma. This can ultimately lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

What is PTSD?

A trauma that you are unable to process can eventually lead to PTSD. The English name PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) is also sometimes used. It is called a Stress Disorder, because an unprocessed trauma has such an impact that it can dominate your whole life. One of the most important characteristics of PTSD is avoiding situations, locations and people. In this way you want to avoid coming into contact with all those things that make you think of the trauma again. If you had given the trauma a place to stay, then you would have been able to look back at it, even though certain emotions are involved. Someone with PTSD absolutely cannot and does not want to remember the trauma. When avoiding situations, you isolate yourself and that is why many PTSD patients are socially isolated.

Symptoms of PTSD

Isolation and loneliness are consequences of PTSD. But there are also numerous symptoms that you can suffer from if you have PTSD. Another characteristic is that even though you do not want to be reminded of the trauma, the images keep appearing in your mind. It is as if you are constantly playing a film of the event. As a result, you have sleepless nights and nightmares and you are more sensitive to all kinds of emotions. You are more easily irritated, you can suffer from anger, you startle easily or you show reckless behaviour. In addition to all these symptoms, you may also suffer from a depression and even suicidal behaviour.

Treating PTSD

It is common that after suffering a trauma, you need time to process it. Fortunately, for most people this goes well and the trauma is dealt with. If you notice that this is not the case for you and you keep playing back the images, then you could have PTSD and it is wise to seek treatment. Of course, this can be very confrontational, which makes you very reluctant to undergo treatment. There are various types of treatment, such as cognitive behavioural therapy and EMDR.

What is a PTSD treatment with EMDR?

PTSD therapy EMDR stands for Eye Movement Densitisation Reprocessing. It is a therapy that was discovered by chance in 1989 by an American psychologist. She discovered that blinking her eyes in a quick moment distracted her from negative thoughts. With this as a starting point she developed the PTSD therapy EMDR. Incidentally, this therapy is not only suitable for PTSD patients. Also Fears and phobias that have arisen from a trauma can be treated with this. The starting point of an EMDR treatment for PTSD is that the PTSD patient goes back to the trauma and is distracted by the therapist. This is done repeatedly so that the trauma slowly gets a place.

How does EMDR for PTSD work in practice?

In EMDR PTSD therapy, distraction of the traumatic memory is central. By repeatedly retrieving the memory and then distracting the PTSD patient, this will become easier and easier and the memory may even fade or a place is given to an unpleasant event. Of course this can be quite heavy. After all, the PTSD patient not only brings up the image, but also the thoughts and feelings of that moment. If it becomes too heavy, breaks are taken. When the therapist asks you to recall the event, you are distracted either by a hand gesture or a sound. Then the therapist asks what you are thinking and feeling and again distracts you. You will notice that after a while, recalling the memory becomes easier and less emotionally charged. Sometimes the memory even fades. This all means that you have gradually given the traumatic experience a place.

EMDR tools for PTSD for practitioners

PTSD therapy for EMDR is an officially scientifically proven therapy and usually achieves successful results. Yet it can be even better, and this with the help of modern techniques. Psylaris has developed handy tools for practitioners, with which a PTSD EMDR treatment can be better controlled and if necessary can be carried out remotely. With EMDR-remote the PTSD EMDR therapy can easily be carried out behind a laptop or PC, whereby the therapist has various possibilities for distraction. With EMDR-VR a whole new step is taken with EMDR PTSD. The treatment is done with VR-glasses, which allow for much more intense distractions. The VR glasses can be used both in the treatment room and at home with the PTSD client.

EMDR-plus

EMDR in virtual reality

The goal of Psylaris is to support therapists even better with sufficient EMDR techniques and tools. EMDR in virtual reality is the latest development. The Psylaris Care consists of virtual reality (VR) glasses that can be connected to various modules. Initially, the VR glasses are used in the treatment room and ensure that the patient enters a virtual environment. This ensures an intensive treatment, making a shorter course of treatment necessary. If the patient is ready, the glasses can be given to him or her for use at home, which means that treatment can also take place at home. There are various modules available for the VR glasses. Besides the EMDR module, there is also a module for the treatment of fear, phobia and stress. Psylaris continues to develop, so that more modules will be released in the near future for an even wider range of treatment.

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Psylaris Care VR therapy

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