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Complex PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can develop after a series of traumatic events. Many people who struggle with complex trauma may benefit from working with an EMDR trauma therapist to help manage and alleviate their symptoms. However, EMDR can take additional time, as there is much to unpack when treating complex trauma symptoms.

What is Complex Trauma?

Complex trauma is trauma developed from not one traumatic event but many repeated events throughout the person’s life. People who sustain frequent or prolonged abuse and neglect as children can develop complex PTSD as adults. These people often create coping mechanisms designed to manage the effects of the trauma. Unfortunately, some of these coping strategies can cause undue difficulties in a person’s life because the core of the issue is they have not fully processed their traumatic experiences.

woman angry

How Can EMDR Help Treat Complex PTSD?

EMDR stands for Eye-Moments Desensitization and Reprocessing. It has become a powerful tool for clinicians to help people heal from post-traumatic stress disorder. The idea is to focus on particular memories and reprocess them while the patient experiences bilateral stimulation. Generally, this stimulation is done by following the therapist’s finger back and forth with their eyes.

During an EMDR session, the therapist asks the patient to access particular thoughts, memory or feeling for processing. The first few sessions might be short, as many people find it difficult to remain focused on a painful memory or experience. However, the client builds up a tolerance for holding onto a particular memory for longer over several sessions.

After resolving one memory, the therapist moves onto the next one and so on. Over time, the client begins to feel closure regarding the painful parts of their trauma. Treating complex PTSD with EMDR can take time, though, as there can be much to unpack.

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Conclusion

EMDR can be an effective treatment for complex trauma symptoms. Complex trauma can occur in individuals who had experienced multiple traumatic incidences in their lifetimes. Clients work with an EMDR trauma therapist to process one memory of traumatic incidences at a time until they can feel some closure. Note that this form of therapy can take time, as there is much to unpack when treating complex trauma symptoms.

Family Strategies Counseling & Mediation is a therapy office serving the Chicagoland Area. We offer couples counseling and mental health services. Our therapists are skilled at working with those who have suffered traumatic experiences. Give our office a call at (708) 798-5433 or email us a info@Family-Strategy.com for appointment details.