The traditional model of weekly psychotherapy simply doesn't meet the needs of everyone. Now more than ever, we need flexibility in how we get support.
- Perhaps you’ve been meaning to get into weekly therapy for a while now, but your schedule has been so hectic and demanding that a weekly therapy appointment feels more overwhelming than supportive.
- Perhaps you’re needing help — and a lot of it — right now, and you don’t want to spend months in the traditional weekly model of therapy treatment to feel better.
- Perhaps you’ve had a felt sense that something profound is changing within you, but you’re not quite sure how to shift all the way into this new experience of yourself with your current therapist. Maybe you cognitively understand new things now with the help of your talk therapist, but your still confused in some ways because this awareness has not yet trickled down to a felt sense in your body. So now you’re curious about how EMDR therapy can help with this important piece.
I offer EMDR intensives for my current clients when they are needing extra support, as well as new clients who prefer to work intensively due to scheduling issues or simply a desire for faster relief.
WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF AN INTENSIVE PROGRAM?
- Concentrated work. EMDR intensives offer a way to receive treatment in a concentrated format. Giving yourself an extended, dedicated space of time allows you to go deeper into the work on the memories and symptoms that brought you into therapy.
- Accelerated healing: Have you been in weekly therapy and been frustrated by the slow progress? Working intensively might allow you to make some significant headway and offer faster relief. A half-day intensive program can be equivalent to about two months of traditional therapy.
- Less pressure: Extended sessions reduce all that pressure to try to get everything done in the traditional 50-55 minute session.
- Save time and money. Intensives are more efficient. Weekly therapy sessions follow a format that eats up time. You walk in, check-in, discuss updates, address crises and concerns of the week, dive into the work, and then before you know it the session is almost over and time has to be spent containing the work and using strategies to return to a state that allows you to safely continue your day. This can be frustrating because it feels like you have only begun to scratch the surface. You spent so much time sharing the ongoing day-to-day struggles that you didn’t get to do half of what you planned to. In an EMDR intensive, this is not the case. With multiple sessions compacted into one session, more time is left to focus on 'the work' which can allow for accelerated progress. As intensives are concentrated and focused, it can add up fewer cumulative treatment hours overall, saving money despite the higher investment up front.
- Cost effectiveness: Some have argued that intensive trauma therapy is more cost effective than traditional weekly therapy for the reasons noted above.
- Easier scheduling. Weekly or even bi-weekly sessions can be difficult to manage for many people. Maybe you are a busy parent, someone who travels regularly, a working professional who has even more on your plate since COVID, or a client who wants or needs help now. Whatever the reason that weekly sessions just won’t work for you, EMDR intensives are available to support you during times you need help the most and in a way that also meets the needs of your busy or complicated schedule.
- Less time away from work and life as sessions are scheduled in a condensed format.
- Skip the line. You are given exclusive access to appointments reserved for the intensive program. This allows you to fast track your therapy by addressing issues in more timely manner and avoiding scheduling issues that often arise when meeting on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.
- 'Lets do this' style. Some people simply prefer a 'go in and get it done' approach to therapy versus the slower pace of weekly therapy.
RESEARCH ON INTENSIVE EMDR THERAPY IS POSITIVE & GROWING
- Intensive application of trauma-focused therapy seems to be well tolerated in patients with PTSD, enabling faster symptom reduction with similar, or even better, results, while reducing the risk that patients drop out prematurely. Learn more here and here.
- Intensive EMDR treatment is feasible and is indicative of reliable improvement in PTSD symptoms in a very short time frame. Learn more here.
- An intensive program using EMDR therapy is a potentially safe and effective treatment alternative for complex PTSD. Learn more here.
- The economy is compelling: even compared to other trauma therapy, the intensive format may decrease treatment time, because of time not spent on a) checking in at the beginning of each session, b) addressing current crises and concerns, c) focusing on stabilizing and coping skills that the client won’t need after trauma healing, or d) assisting the client in regaining composure at the end of the session. Learn more here.
- E.C. Hurley's (Frontiers in Psychology, 24 August 2018 ) results show that EMDR Therapy is effective in both weekly and intensive treatment formats when treating Veterans diagnosed with PTSD . Learn more here.
YOUR EMDR INTENSIVE PROGRAM INCLUDES:
- Pre-consultation interview to assess for candidacy for the Intensive program, discuss any questions or concerns you have, and identify distressing beliefs, body sensations, emotions, or images from which you are seeking relief.
- Optional personalized treatment workbook, which allows you to work on your treatment goals before, during, and after our EMDR intensive sessions.
- A customized treatment program with targeted treatment goals, including half-day and 3-day options. Your Intensive Processing program begins by developing resources to increase your sense of calm, security, and control, allowing you to more safely and confidently engage in the reprocessing phase of treatment and handle any between session distress that arises. If clinically indicated, reprocessing will take place next with breaks for self-care as needed. The last 15-30 minutes of an intensive session are spent closing the session and assessing/planning for additional needs.
- Post-treatment interview typically occurs about a week after your processing session(s) and is designed to assess and support your adaption to positive changes from treatment and identify any 'next-steps'.
*IMPORTANT: Additional EMDR therapy intensives may be necessary to achieve your treatment goals. For persons with complex or relational trauma or other complex needs/goals, additional intensive work will be recommended. Individuals with more complex trauma histories may be considered for Mini-Intensives if a primary therapist is involved for continued support, making this adjunct EMDR. Follow-up recommendations are individualized based on your specific needs.