What is the treatment?

Contemporary neuroscience and psychotherapy are rapidly changing how our brain can reprocess information and adapt to past trauma. Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of psychotherapy which is listed in the NICE guidelines and is paid for by insurers in medico legal cases. EMDR has been developed as an effective therapy for anxiety, depression, grief and the symptoms of post traumatic stress which integrates thoughts, mental pictures, sensations and feelings.

How does the treatment work?

It may be relevant and useful for you if there is an issue or circumstance from the recent or far distant past which continues to distress you or intrusively disturb your present day living. It may involve a one off event or multiple experiences. Whilst you will always be able to remember , there is significant hope and optimism because EMDR has an evidence base that shows  we can change how the brain reprocesses the information until it no longer causes you problems in how you are thinking, feeling and behaving now.

Ordinary talk therapy is incomplete in bringing relief and changes in how you think, feel and behave due to traumatic stress symptoms.  This is because the brain has disrupted connections. Information is stored in fragmented form about what you saw, heard, touched, tasted, emotionally felt and from how your physiology was interrupted when you were doing whatever you were doing at that time.

The part of the brain that has got stuck processing as if you are ‘living in the past’  keeps you on your guard, vigilant and on the lookout for threats to your safety and existence. You cannot reason the body out of reacting to stimuli that causes a reaction in the limbic system!  No matter how many times others tell you that you are ‘safe’ or that your thoughts are irrational or that you are over-reacting, these assurances just do not penetrate the protective shell around you.

Basically, if your inner alarm goes off you are automatically wired to react to any threat by fighting, fleeing or freezing. You may not even realise the reasons why your body tripped into automatic behaviours to preserve you at all costs. This is massively confusing, frustrating, frightening and deeply shameful.

Ordinary talk therapy does not decondition the limbic system which is wired up to protect you. It is not even necessary (unless you find it useful) to retell the account of what happened to you. If or when you do, Jacqueline, your psychotherapist, can bear to listen to every last detail of what it is that you know and have dared not tell.

EMDR therapy does not rely upon language and talking for you to make brain change.  An important and crucial preparation in EMDR psychotherapy is creating new associations for the brain  so you can  have a real time, in the now, experience of change. As you learn how traumatic stress can be deconditioned , your body and mind, brain and behaviour is positively activated through your influence and so there emerges a true glimmer of hope.

Who can benefit from the treatment?

EMDR psychotherapy is probably useful if you have something in your experience that brings about intense emotions which you may not be able to talk about, or understand with words. You may feel like you are behind triple glazed glass or shielded by armour plating.  Others may not recognise you and you may despise the way you see yourself.

Sometimes you don’t even believe you are alive. But your hurt is real.

You or friends, family or work colleagues may have noticed you behaving in ways which seem to be out of kilter. It could be that you are insular and withdrawn, uncharacteristically quiet. Or there could be an intensity to how your emotions burst out like a dam breaking, or a volcano erupting. Ordinary life may have lost its meaning for you. Sometimes you may actually believe that everyone would be better off if you were dead.

As a consequence of traumatic stress, there is a reduction in the brain’s capacity to analyse and categorize information. You may find concentration difficult, be sensitive to noise, even of your own children playing or the loud chants of football supporters. Activities that you were previously interested or involved in may seem to be from a different lifetime. EMDR psychotherapy will reconnect you to the parts of you that you feel have been numbed or lost. You can learn how to take good care of yourself.

You will not forget. You will always be able to remember the significance of what you know and how you used to think, feel and behave. What changes is how your brain, interconnected with your body physiology and your beliefs linked with your emotions gives you freedom of choice. 

Sexual Abuse, Terrorism, Bullying, Redundancy, Death , Partnership/Marriage Breakdown, Burglary, Guilt, Road Traffic Accident, Bankruptcy, Abortion,  Anxiety, Combat, Still Birth,  Pain,  Retirement, Natural Disasters, Earthquakes, Fire, Flood, Tsunami, Tornadoes and Hurricanes, Home Repossession,  Ageing, Fear, Rape, Miscarriage, Kidnapping, Childhood Neglect, Fertility concerns, Disease, Emotional Abuse, Legal disputes, Missing Person, Assault, Reactive Depression, Body Loathing/Dysmorphia, Loss, Repeated Surgery,  Suicide, Prejudice, Panic,  Work Related Stress, Labour/ Birthing Traumatic Stress, Relocation, Eating Distress/Disorders, Phobia. What would you put on here that is traumatically stressful for you and you are now ready to seek help with?

Jacqueline is an experienced, skilled and passionate psychotherapist committed to working collaboratively with you. With Jacqueline’s professional support you can reprocess and find release from being hostage to the symptoms of traumatic stress. Trained by Gerry Puk,  Manda Holmshaw and John Spector EMDR Clinical Psychologist since 2005. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is EMDR painful?

EMDR is a non-invasive treatment. In some cases we may focus your attention by touching you, but this is the highest level of physical contact that you would experience. This is an evidence backed treatment that helps you decouple negative feelings and emotions from memories of past traumas that does not require medical treatment.

When can I begin my treatment?

We will do our best to arrange an initial consultation as soon as possible. In most cases we will be able to to initiate therapy very promptly as we do not have the limitations that can sometimes result in long waiting times for NHS treatment. We offer a limited number of sessions outside normal office hours in mornings, evenings and weekends and will do our best to find a time that works best for you.

How do I start my treatment?

The first step is to get in touch with Jacqueline, our lead counsellor. She will arrange for an initial consultation where we can asses your needs. We will then create a programme of treatment that meets your requirements, drawing on the wide range of talking and physical therapies that we offer.

How can EMDR help me?

EMDR can provide relief if you think or feel in the following ways.

  • Things you think or have heard said:
    • It was my fault
    • I should have done something
    • I’m bad
    • I’m never going to feel safe again
    • I cannot get it out of my mind
    • I cannot trust anyone
    • I’m permanently damaged
    • I feel hopeless
  • How you are feeling
    • You notice aches, pains, soreness, nausea, lifelessness or numbness and your body may even feel like it doesn’t belong to you, or you wish you could get rid of it
    • You are angry and irritable without any obvious cause, or apathetic and uninterested in events or people close to you, or weepy or at the slightest thing
    • You cannot get a picture out of your mind, or you remember a particular feeling, or a smell or taste and it makes you feel ‘out of control’
    • You believe you cannot change the past, and you have to get on with it. Shut up and put up!

Can EMDR help with traumatic experiences?

EMDR can help with overcoming traumatic experiences, PTSD.

  • Men and women survivors of sexual abuse
  • Children with symptoms caused by witnessing or experiencing distressing events
  • People pre op and post op surgeries
  • Those who have had accidents and who were once emotionally or physically debilatated
  • Issues particular to military involvement and combat, combat trauma
  • Military personnel experiencing Post traumatic stress
  • Civil service employees involved in Foot and mouth epidemic
  • People with phobias and panic disorders who report a rapid reduction of fear and avoidance behaviours
  • Victims of crime, who were thinking they could no longer live as they had done, or in the place they were


What is the EMDR treatment process?

I will ask you how you want to think about that time in the past, how you want to feel, and how you want to live now and in the future, recognising you cannot change the past, you can change how you live with it ! Take positive action to make change and contact me NOW This is a neuropsychological way of processing information and accelerated learning which has been valued by the UK government ofHealth since 2001

How do I book an appointment?

Please get in touch with Jacqueline who will help find the appointment that’s best for you.

How can EMDR help individuals and couples planning for conception and pregnancy?

As a woman it is possible to very much want a baby, and be anxious, fearful or phobic about the process of pregnancy and labour. Using clinically recommended therapy I can help you and your partner recover from past events or situations that are stirring up negative thoughts and feelings for you in the present. If you have already had an experience which has left you with disturbing or distressing thoughts, images or sensation – EMDR therapy can provide you with relief

  • Fertility treatment, IVF counselling
  • Infertility counselling
  • Pre-natal counselling
  • Post-natal counselling and therapy
  • Stress and anxiety hypnotherapies
  • Couples counselling in pregnancy
  • Child counselling with arts therapies
  • Natal counselling services

EMDR for Arts & Sports performance improvement

Arts & Sports performance improvement

EMDR therapies can optionally be combined with Dance Movement Therapy and Sports NLP, which may be of specialist interest for enhancing amateur or professional development for pleasure in participation and performance. DMT is useful for people of any age as a creative and expressive way of exploring psychological and emotional issues and no previous experience is required. Emdr Sheffield and South Yorkshire are here to help.

Can EMDR help with personal development?

Personal & professional improvement

As a senior staff counsellor I am familiar and skilled assisting with work or personal difficulties which may be preventing you from achieving a satisfying balance of work and leisure.

  • Work related stress and depression
  • People with performance anxiety
  • Those seeking to optimise their presentations & leadership in business


Can EMDR help those who have had traumatic experiences of pregnancy and childbirth?

EMDR in maternity and paternity related therapy. With extensive experience working with mothers and fathers in birth related counselling and psychotherapies; I offer a particularly supportice service to:

  • Women and parents  who have suffered miscarriage
  • Mothers and couples with failed infertility treatments
  • Premature baby death
  • Loss of a child through accidental death or suicide
  • Traumatic birth experience including emergency ‘c’ section.


Who can benefit from EMDR treatment?

EMDR has been utilised with great success with a wide variety of clients including:

  • Health care workers and professionals such as paramedics, Doctors and nurses
  • Those who have witnessed or been involved in incidents in the work place, suicide, mistakes with serious consequences
  • Road traffic accident victims and witnesses
  • Victims of physical assault
  • Military personnel / War veterans


How long do sessions last?

Sessions typically last 90 minutes.

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