EMDR for Trauma & PTSD

Trauma lingers like an unshakeable shadow, altering how you see the world and yourself. It's the persistent replay of a past, distressing event that disrupts your inner calm and security. Emotionally, it surfaces as a turbulent mix of fear, sadness, and anger, often intertwined with vivid flashbacks that abruptly transport you back to those moments of terror. On a physical level, it manifests as a perpetual state of alertness, with tightened muscles and a racing heart, making restful sleep a rarity, often disrupted by unsettling nightmares. This constant state of tension can lead to a deep sense of disconnection, creating a feeling of isolation and turning even the most familiar environments and relationships into sources of stress and unease. Trauma redefines your life experience, casting a long, imposing shadow over your every day.

Whether you're grappling with a 'big T' trauma, such as sexual assault or violence, or dealing with complex PTSD or relational trauma, the impact of trauma is profound and lasting. Continue reading below to gain a deeper understanding of how we approach PTSD, or visit our page on complex PTSD to learn more about the nuances of relational trauma.

Break Free from the Impact of Trauma

Overcome issues with anxiety by addressing underlying traumas through integrative EMDR therapy.

Laura Faiwiszewski, Psy.D
Clinical Psychologist
PTSD, acute & chronic trauma
Hypnosis, EMDR, CBT & acceptance-based
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Irada Yunusova, Psy.D
Clinical Psychologist
PTSD & complex PTSD
EMDR, EFT, attachment - focused, CBT, & DBT
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Rebecca Hoffenberg, Psy.D
Clinical Psychologist
PTSD, childhood sexual abuse & trauma
EMDR, trauma-informed & mindfulness
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How We Work with Trauma and PTSD

In our role as clinical psychologists, we employ a diverse array of therapeutic techniques to develop a detailed and personalized treatment strategy for those dealing with trauma and PTSD. Initially, we utilize EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) as a foundational tool to process traumatic memories and lessen their emotional impact. This technique, which involves bilateral stimulation such as eye movements, is crucial in diminishing the distress directly associated with trauma memories. Based on the specific needs of each patient and the therapeutic approach, we may integrate Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) to focus on emotional healing. EFT aids in dissecting and reshaping emotional responses, or we may blend in attachment-focused therapy for individuals whose trauma has affected their capacity to establish and sustain secure relationships. Additionally, we incorporate Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) for those experiencing significant emotional fluctuations and impulsive behaviors following their trauma. DBT's emphasis on skills like distress tolerance, mindfulness, and emotional regulation augments other therapies by offering practical strategies for managing everyday symptoms and responses.

By merging these methods, we construct a multi-layered treatment approach that addresses the different aspects of PTSD. This comprehensive strategy enables us to confront trauma from various perspectives - including memory processing, emotional regulation, cognitive restructuring, relationship dynamics, and skill development - paving the way for a thorough journey towards healing and resilience.

"Trauma is not just a memory, it is an echo of pain that reverberates through every aspect of one's life, a profound disruption that speaks in the silent language of distress and despair, altering the very fabric of existence."

Our Specialists in EMDR for Trauma & PTSD

Dr. Rebecca Hoffenberg

Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Hoffenberg, renowned for her expertise in PTSD, childhood sexual abuse, and trauma, adopts a highly specialized approach in her therapeutic practice. She focuses on working with individuals who have endured profound traumas, particularly those stemming from childhood sexual abuse. Understanding the deep and lasting impact such experiences can have, Dr. Hoffenberg employs a blend of EMDR, trauma-informed care, and mindfulness techniques in her treatment approach. 

With her advanced training in relational EMDR, she helps patients process and reduce the intensity of traumatic memories in a safe and controlled environment. Her trauma-informed approach ensures that she addresses trauma in a holistic and sensitive manner, recognizing the wide-ranging effects it can have on one's emotional, psychological, and physical well-being. Additionally, mindfulness practices are integrated into her therapy sessions, aiding her patients in developing greater awareness and control over their present-moment experiences. This combination of techniques allows Dr. Hoffenberg to provide a compassionate, effective, and tailored treatment for those grappling with the complex aftermath of trauma and PTSD.

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Dr. Laura Faiwiszewski

Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Faiwiszewski, an expert in addressing PTSD, brings a unique and effective set of skills to her therapeutic practice. With a profound understanding of the complexities involved in these types of trauma, she adopts a multifaceted approach that combines hypnosis, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and acceptance-based techniques. Her use of hypnosis serves as a powerful tool to access and heal deep-seated emotional wounds, enabling patients to explore and reframe traumatic memories in a safe and controlled setting. EMDR is another critical component of her therapy, facilitating the processing of traumatic memories to reduce their lingering impact significantly.

Incorporating CBT, Dr. Faiwiszewski helps her patients challenge and restructure maladaptive thought patterns related to their trauma, empowering them to adopt healthier perspectives and coping mechanisms. Additionally, her acceptance-based approach encourages patients to embrace their experiences without judgment, fostering a sense of peace and self-compassion. This holistic combination of therapies allows Dr. Faiwiszewski to offer a compassionate, comprehensive, and effective treatment tailored to the unique needs of individuals grappling with the enduring effects of PTSD, trauma, and physical abuse.

Dr. Irada Yunusova

Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Yunusova specializes in treating PTSD, racial trauma, and survivors of physical and sexual abuse. She employs a diverse and comprehensive therapeutic approach, blending EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy), attachment-focused therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). This multifaceted approach allows her to address the complex and varied experiences of her patients effectively.

Utilizing EMDR, Dr. Yunusova helps patients process and diminish the intense emotional impact of traumatic memories. EFT is incorporated to explore and restructure emotional responses, particularly useful in dealing with the deep-seated emotions associated with racial trauma and abuse. Attachment-focused therapy plays a crucial role in her practice, especially for those whose trauma has affected their ability to form secure relationships, helping them develop healthier attachment styles.

Dr. Yunusova's combination of EMDR, EFT, attachment-focused therapy, CBT, and DBT offers a holistic and tailored treatment experience, addressing the psychological, emotional, and relational aspects of trauma. Her approach is particularly effective in providing comprehensive care to those dealing with the complexities of PTSD, racial trauma, and the aftermath of physical and sexual abuse.

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How EMDR Helps with Trauma & PTSD

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) stands out as an exceptionally effective therapy for trauma healing, and its efficacy is grounded in substantial research. The essence of EMDR's effectiveness lies in its unique approach to processing and recontextualizing traumatic memories. During EMDR sessions, bilateral stimulation, often through eye movements, triggers the brain's natural information processing system, akin to the mechanisms at work during REM sleep. This process facilitates the reprocessing of traumatic memories, transforming them from a state of acute distress to one where they can be integrated into the individual's life experience more adaptively.

Research has consistently shown that EMDR can significantly reduce the emotional impact of traumatic memories. Studies, such as those published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology and the Journal of Traumatic Stress, have demonstrated the efficacy of EMDR in reducing symptoms of PTSD, including anxiety, flashbacks, and emotional distress. In these studies, EMDR not only helped participants process their traumatic experiences but also led to a significant decrease in PTSD symptoms, often in fewer sessions compared to traditional forms of therapy.

Another critical aspect of EMDR's effectiveness is its ability to alter negative belief systems associated with trauma. For instance, a belief like "I am to blame" can be transformed into "I did the best I could." This cognitive aspect of EMDR is crucial in fostering a sense of empowerment and resilience in individuals who have experienced trauma. It also promotes improved emotional regulation, a key factor in long-term trauma recovery. By processing traumatic memories in a safe and controlled environment, individuals learn to manage their emotional responses more effectively.

The research-backed effectiveness of EMDR makes it not just a treatment for the symptoms of trauma, but a pathway to holistic healing. It allows individuals to reframe and integrate their traumatic experiences, reducing their ongoing impact and enabling personal growth. EMDR's comprehensive approach, supported by empirical evidence, marks it as a robust and effective therapy for those grappling with the effects of trauma.

FAQ About EMDR for Trauma & PTSD

Is EMDR effective for treating PTSD?

Yes, EMDR is widely recognized as an effective treatment for PTSD. Numerous studies have shown that EMDR can significantly reduce PTSD symptoms, often in a shorter timeframe compared to traditional talk therapies.

How long does EMDR therapy take to show results?

The duration varies depending on the individual and the complexity of their trauma. Some people experience relief after just a few sessions, while others may need a longer course of treatment. Generally, EMDR tends to show results more quickly than some other therapy methods.

Can EMDR be used for traumas other than PTSD?

Absolutely. EMDR is effective in treating various types of trauma, not just PTSD. This includes acute trauma, childhood trauma, and trauma resulting from events like accidents, loss, or abuse.

What makes EMDR different from traditional talk therapy?

Unlike traditional talk therapy that primarily focuses on discussions and cognitive understanding, EMDR is more focused on the emotional and physical responses to trauma and uses bilateral stimulation to aid in processing memories.

Do I need to talk in detail about my trauma during EMDR therapy?

EMDR does not require you to go into extensive detail about your trauma if you are not comfortable doing so. The process focuses more on your emotional and physical reactions to the traumatic event.

Ready To Break Free from Trauma Holding You Back?

Let us lead you on a journey towards empowerment, helping you to liberate yourself from the grips of trauma and cultivate inner resilience and a positive self-perception.