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The Role of Eye Movement in Emdr

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By msosa3200
Words 306
Pages 2
Monique Sosa
HLT 205
May 10, 2012
Dr. Roberts

The Role of Eye Movements in E.M.D.R There are eight phases of treatment to E.M.D.R. throughout phases 4 through 6 of EMDR clients concentrate on their disturbing or desired occurrences at the same time as they attend to a dual attention stimulus. Eye movements dual attention stimulus are the most commonly used, but tapping, tactile stimulation, and auditory tones are used as well. These are generally offered in an alternating bilateral fashion – e.g., first to one ear, then the other, then the first ear, etc. It is believed that the dual attention component of EMDR aids information processing but, as with all methods of psychotherapy, the basic neurobiological motive for these results are unidentified even though some neurobiologists have suggested mechanisms of action. Presently there is research support for working memory philosophies and the direct response. A number of studies have suggested that the eye movement decreases emotional distress and memory intensity or enhance recall. Although eye movements are frequently thought of as its best distinct component, EMDR is not an easy procedure controlled by the practice of eye movements. It is a difficult psychotherapy, including many components that are reflected to add to treatment effects. Eye movements are used to hold the client’s attention to an external stimulus, while the client is concurrently concentrating on internal distressing material. Shapiro defines eye movements as “dual attention stimuli,” to identify the method in which the client focuses on both external and internal stimuli. The use of such alternate stimuli has been an integral part of the EMDR protocol for more than 10 years (Shapiro 1991, 1993).

References EMDR Institute, Inc. (2011) Eye Movement and Desensitization Retrieved on May 10, 2012 from

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