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Emdr at home? self-administerd emdr - do you do it?

  • Thread starter Deleted member 47099
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Deleted member 47099

Hi there,

It's been over 10 years since I did EMDR in trauma therapy and at the time, it only played a small part of the overall therapy, but I did it at home too.

I want to start doing it again, for myself, at home.

Do any of you practise it at home?

There's a few youtube videos on "self-administered" EMDR. I might watch a couple to refresh my memory of the technique.

Is there anything specific you watch out for if you do EMDR at home?

Thanks! : )
Hmm, I am 20 years into my PTSD therapy and healing journey....

I agree that at the start of trauma therapy, all sorts of stuff could probably go wrong re EMDR / at home.

But after 20 years, I'm pretty sure there's no new traumatic material that could flood me, really.

I think I'm in the maintenance - management stage now.

So I doubt I need to be concerned about that.

But I agree with your point that ppl starting out should be careful with it, yes! : )
I'm going to have to agree with @piratelady.
And add that, even with 20 years of treatment you're still symptomatic and without the guidance of a T to pull you up, things can go sour.

I wouldn't do it if I were you. But I'm not, just worried.

Last appointment my T said never to do EMDR stuff alone without her or a different T's guidance, it's dangerous.
I trust her, she's cool :)
That's weird.
I used to do it at home 10 years ago, when I first learned it.
I was just told to go easy with it and not push it.
I quite like it and wanted to start it again.
I'm confused too now, LOL : )

I do both the eye movements and the tapping, combined.

10 years ago, I was told the whole point of EMDR was getting the two hemispheres of the brain to process stuff together.

I was told I could do EMDR at home, for dealing with triggers.

So with a trigger, I would do EMDR (eye movement, tapping) to get both brain hemispheres to deal with the trigger together/ at once.

It seems to help process the trigger.

I thought the bilateral stuff (both hemispheres) was the point of EMDR?

I agree that using it at home to "uncover and process" new trauma wouldn't be very useful!

But for dealing with triggers I used to find it helpful.
A handful of studies have been done on EMDR in the past 10 years since you last used it. EMDR can be such a powerful tool that can help or can contribute to a bad symptom flare. Most therapists don't recommend using it at home these days.

I'm going to cautiously say that I've done it at home for performance (day to day life stuff) and a fear that had nothing to do with trauma. It was useful. My old therapist from many years ago taught it to me.

I would not recommend it for processing trauma or triggers. (Triggers vs Stressors.) Triggers connect closely to trauma. I think it can be ok to try using it for stressors, no connection to trauma, but are things that can fill up the stress cup and contribute to symptoms.

I also would not recommend risking doing it for any subject if struggling with any dissociation or if struggling with a spike in symptoms. The spike in symptoms is a sign that things are already overwhelming. Some believe that EMDR works because gets around and under defense mechanisms and allows people to process what they otherwise can't. Things can go wonky if someone tries it when symptoms are high or there is any symptomatic dissociation in the picture. That's not a good time to go around defenses without someone on the outside to help keep things from going too far.
There is an emdr based ap that has a guide That leads you through safe space or calming anxiety. It pings in your ear buds left/right or you can watch the visuals on the screen. It has the timing built in. My T suggested it and uses it herself. I have found that if my brain is too wound into trauma the ap will make things worse because my brain will try to start processing the trauma. However, when I used it for take off and landing on the plane it was great! Also, many times I turn it on and fall asleep during the process.
I do a butterfly hug and tap each shoulder.. it is quite calming. My t encouraged that I do this if I am having distress. I have...it helps. It is crazy how the hugging part is comforting. I am not really in to that so I find it odd...lol.
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