EMDR helps children deal with; sexual abuse, witnessing and experiencing physical and emotional abuse, accidents, parental deaths, hospitalizations, negative reactions to parental separations and divorces, problems related to ADHD, abandonment issues, low self-esteem, anxieties and fears, anger management issues, and problems with being teased and bullied.
Although EMDR was developed to work with adults who had experienced severe trauma and had PTSD symptoms, it can be adapted to work very effectively with children for a variety of issues.
We offer EMDR Therapy to children (over 9) and adolescents.
What does it involve?
It is common for traumatised children to develop negative coping strategies to avoid the uncomfortable thoughts and feelings, often creating long term problems for the child and/or the families. Many parents do not recognize the impact of the trauma on the child because they are either dealing with their own PTSD symptoms, are in denial about the impact of the event on their child or simply do not recognize what trauma behaviours in children look like. Sometimes parents need to proceed with their own counselling to work through their issues so they can be more emotionally present and responsive to their child’s needs.
Since children naturally want to avoid dealing with uncomfortable feelings or traumatic memories, it can be challenging to engage children in EMDR (EMDR Therapists trained for use with children access clinical supervision as required for this).
What are the Benefits?
EMDR has demonstrated some dramatic changes in children, for example: Fears and phobias disappear, self-esteem improves, sleep problems and nightmares cease, positive behavioural changes occur, learning problems may decrease, normal play returns, obsessive/compulsive behaviours decrease, and social skills improve.
For some children EMDR is able to bring about the improvements in a small amount of sessions. For other children with more complex problems, EMDR may be conducted over a longer period of time which includes installing positive resources as well as working at traumatic experiences.