Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County’s Addiction Services program is launching a new service designed to diagnose and treat individuals suffering from trauma, stress, anxiety and depression.Addiction Services staff are now trained to utilize Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy for people who have substance use disorders. EMDR is an extensively researched and effective psychotherapy method to help people grow through past trauma and other distressing life experiences.“We have learned that for some the journey to full recover is deeply enhanced by addressing other issues that may be getting in their way,” said William Roberts, Addiction Services Senior Manager.

The EMDR Institute describes the therapy as an eight-phase treatment process that incorporates eye movements and other physical stimulation. The therapist may also teach the client a variety of imagery and stress reduction techniques to use during and between sessions.

After the clinician has determined which traumatic memory to target, they ask the client to hold different aspects of that event or thought in mind and to use their eyes to track the therapist’s hand as it moves back and forth across the client’s field of vision. As this happens, internal associations occur and the clients begin to process the memory and disturbing feelings.If you or someone you know is suffering from addiction, contact Public Health’s Addiction Services program for a free consultation and evaluation at (937) 461-5223 extension 0. If further treatment is recommended Addiction Services staff can recommend an appropriate treatment program.

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