EMDR Trauma Therapy at The Beaches Treatment Center
EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. This psychotherapy is a form of treatment that gives people the power to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are caused by previous experienced traumatic life events. There are many aspects of EMDR therapy, it shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma just as our body heals from physical trauma.
Healing From Traumatic Life Events
At The Beaches Treatment Center, we are all about healing the whole person, mind, body, and spirit. A part of our healing model for the mind is our EMDR Therapy. EMDR is best known for helping individuals heal from traumatic events. According to our in-house statistics, about 90% of our client population has experienced one form of trauma in their past. The use of EMDR is expanding and helping more and more people with issues that are causing them distress in their lives. EMDR treatment for addictions is a good example.
For many people the traumatic experience is too intense or the discomfort is to great for them to face and instead they turn to addiction. These feelings often resemble emptiness, grief, boredom, isolation, or alienation- and we know no one wants to have these emotions flowing through them. Turning to the use of drugs or alcohol as a form of self medication can numb those uncomfortable feelings or memories. This is not a permanent fix however.
There are many kinds of addictions, such as drug abuse, alcoholism, food addiction, sex addiction, gambling addiction, eating disorders (addicted to forms of monitored eating, binging, and malnourishment), these are a few- but there are so many more. No matter the addiction an individual is suffering from, the process of living with the addiction is unmanageable, and it can negatively impact every single different aspect in a person’s life. Their health, relationships, work, social aspects, family life, emotions, and so much more.
EMDR and Addiction Treatment
There are different models that explain addictions and their functions; the most relevant addictions model for EMDR therapy is trauma based.
The Adverse Childhood Experience Study is very informative when it comes to comparing trauma and increased risk of addiction.
Take a look at the 10 factors in the ACE study, showing that trauma in childhood can increase one’s risk of developing addictions later in life.
There are 10 factors in the ACE study:
Household mental illness
Parental separation or divorce
Household member in prison
Domestic violence within the home (especially towards the mother)
Household substance abuse
This study showed that if an individual had 5 or more occurrences they were 70-100% at greater risk for addiction issues in adult life. The study concluded that traumatic events have a great impact on an individual’s whole life, especially when related to substance abuse and addiction.
The relationship between the drug of choice and the individual using is a struggle. Most therapists can see where drugs completely dominant an individual’s life. Typically the DOC (drug of choice) takes priority over everything- work, family, children, loved ones, friends, and everything else. This attachment is extremely unhealthy and this is where the problem surfaces, because these are the aspects that makes substance abuse unmanageable for life itself.
All of our caring clinical staff at The Beaches Treatment Center know what a challenge it can be working in the field of addiction. Our clients are fragile, so we work hard to give them the tools they need for a new life in recovery. We want to encourage hope, healing and serenity while recovering from trauma and drug addiction.
A successful EMDR treatment for addiction has to address the trauma that is driving the addictive behaviors. As the trauma is processed through EMDR, the addiction should lose its potency and the urge to use a substance should decreases as well, especially during trigger events.
We understand working with clients who are struggling with addictions can be challenging, but we know with patience, hope, safety and serenity: We Do Recover. The Time to Relax Your Mind is Now…