What Kinds Of Trauma Can EMDR Help With?

If you've thought about going to therapy, you may have heard about EMDR. EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, which is a type of therapy that can be used to help people who have experienced trauma.

EMDR has been found to be an effective treatment for trauma, but you may not be certain if it's the right option for you. These are some of the types of trauma you can work through with EMDR therapy.


PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, is a type of trauma that can be treated with EMDR. PTSD can develop after someone experiences or sees a traumatic event, like a natural disaster, a car accident, or a violent crime. Symptoms of PTSD can include nightmares, flashbacks, anxiety, and avoidance of places or things that remind you of the trauma.

After EMDR, you may experience fewer symptoms of PTSD or feel less troubled by your memories of the trauma.

Sexual Assault

EMDR can also be helpful for people who have experienced sexual assault. Sexual assault can include rape, incest, molestation, and unwanted sexual advances or contact.

If you've experienced sexual assault, you may have symptoms of PTSD. You may also feel depressed, have trouble sleeping, or avoid people or places that remind you of the assault.

EMDR can help you work through your memories of the sexual assault and can also help you deal with some of the symptoms you may be experiencing.

Childhood Trauma

EMDR can also be used to help people who have experienced childhood trauma. Childhood trauma can include abuse, neglect, and any type of trauma that occurs during childhood.

If you experienced childhood trauma, you could have some of the symptoms of PTSD. Some people experience a different form of the condition known as CPTSD, or complex PTSD. Complex PTSD can occur when someone experiences long-term or repeated trauma, such as childhood abuse.

EMDR helps patients work through these memories. It also provides a toolset for working through lingering emotions.

Violent Crime

If you've been the victim of a violent crime, such as a robbery, home invasion, or mugging, you may benefit from EMDR. Violent crimes can leave you feeling scared, alone, and helpless. You may have trouble sleeping or experience flashbacks.

EMDR may ease severe anxiety about these types of crimes. It also may help lessen the intensity of flashbacks or nightmares.

Talk to Your Counselor About EMDR

If you're considering therapy, talk to your counselor about whether EMDR might be a good option for you. EMDR can be an effective treatment for trauma.