How Was EMDR Therapy Discovered?

Dr. Francine Shapiro serendipitously discovered EMDR Therapy in 1987 while she was walking in a park, and noticed that she had some upsetting thoughts and feelings that suddenly disappeared. She was puzzled by this and decided to find out why. As a graduate student studying psychology she decided to research what was happening for her more closely. She began experimenting and observed that when she moved her eyes rapidly back and forth while thinking of something disturbing, the disturbance began to go away. She eventually developed a protocol that could be duplicated and studied, which is now known as EMDR Therapy (or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy).

She began to work with people suffering from PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). Dr. Shapiro’s research was very powerful and successful. The people with PTSD after receiving several EMDR Therapy sessions found that their symptoms decreased. People started to feel better. Since its discovery, EMDR Therapy has become one of the most recommended and researched psychotherapeutic treatments of trauma. EMDR Therapy has helped millions of people around the world heal from PTSD.


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