Psychological and Social Aspects of Emergencies / Disasters
Values, theories and the aptness of mental health intervention have been greatly practiced, published and discussed to address the ever increasing post traumatic stress disorders as a result of social degradation, man made and natural calamities. The post traumatic stress disorder, as a disorder results in many cases in America. However, it has been argued to be a condition that has no great consequence in most second and third world countries, whose populations largely live on low incomes, mostly under a dollar a day. These observers suggest that models of ailments and subsequent treatment in western cultures do not necessarily have the same desired effects in other cultures.
Denying the aspect of post traumatic stress disorder is however, perceived as professional negligence.
Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a fairly new and debatable form of psychotherapy. It was formulated and put into action by psychologist Francine Shapiro in 1987. As she was walking through a park, she deciphered that a negative emotion she felt, diminished as her eyes moved side to side, following which, she received a similar feedback from patients with whom she introduced to this therapeutic technique.
EMDR therapy sessions are relatively compounded and incorporate parts of other therapeutic models of treatment and from these, 8 phase therapy sessions are required for treatment of psychological disorders. First phase, where the patient introduces the therapist to emotional and physical feelings associated with a traumatic experience. In the second phase, the therapist guides the patient through to self care ways of handling overbearing emotions experienced in sessions or in between sessions. The third phase includes the therapist assessing the patients familiarity with a specific time or thing that correctly captures the traumatic experience, a negative emotion of the patient’s self regarding the experience, and a positive thought of the patient’s self having lived through that particular experience. The fourth phase, the patient attentively notes down all negative thoughts and emotions body movements as neutral, bad or OK. This is the relayed to the psychologist.
Phase 5, the patient is asked to embrace positive thoughts about the experience and rate the strength of the belief the sixth phase, the therapist keenly watch for patients physical movements to address any remaining negative emotional tension. In the seventh phase the therapy is closed with the patient feeling better and bearing positive thoughts on progress after trauma. The eighth phases included reassessment and re evaluation of the patient’s progress.
EMDR has had effective results and is practiced by over 20, 000 psychotherapists for the treatments of post traumatic stress disorder, panic attacks, eating problems or disorders, addiction and nervousness. The American Psychiatric Association has accepted that it is effective in treatment of both acute and chronic PSTD while advocating for more research on sustainability of these form of psychotherapy. The Department of Veteran Affairs and the Department of Defense strongly advocate for use of EDMR to both the military and civilian populations in treatment of PSTD.
In conclusion, as a method for treating post traumatic stress disorder, EMDR has produced effective and consistent results laying ground for further research and practice as an effective form of treatment especially when no other form of treatment can show evidence of managing post traumatic stress disorder.
Dennison, C. H. (2007). EMDR: Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing. Retrieved February 18, 2011 from http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/emdr-what-is-it