Windmill Wellness Ranch uses Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. This is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma. EMDR is a set of standardized protocols that incorporate elements from many different treatment approaches. EMDR is a mental health intervention.
How Does EMDR Work?
When a person is very upset, their brain cannot process information as it does ordinarily. In a fight or flight moment, the brain releases chemicals like adrenaline. You may have heard someone say when they experienced a car accident “it was over before I knew it,” or “it happened in slow motion.” Those are two diametrically opposite sensations and memories. This occurs because the brain is in fight or flight mode. During that experience, traumatic memories are not stored properly and are left on the door of the amygdala in the brain. This is a protective factor. One moment becomes "frozen in time," and remembering a trauma may feel as bad as going through it the first time because the images, sounds, smells, and feelings haven’t changed. Such memories have a lasting negative effect that interferes with the way a person sees the world and the way they relate to other people.
EMDR has a direct effect on the way that the brain processes information. Following a successful EMDR session, a person no longer relives the images, sounds, and feelings when the event is brought to mind. They still remember what happened, but it is less upsetting. Many types of therapy have similar goals. However, EMDR appears to be similar to what occurs naturally during dreaming or REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Therefore, EMDR can be thought of as a physiologically based therapy that helps a person see disturbing material in a new and less distressing way.
This form of therapy, when done by an experienced clinician, is life changing. Those that experience resolution with trauma are able to continue their lives and not live in fear.