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EMDR and Post-Traumatic Stress Caused from Traffic Accidents

One of the most common causes of traumatic stress in the United States is auto accidents. According to the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, accidents were shown to be the traumatic event most frequently experienced by men (25%) and the second most frequently experienced by women (13%).

Aside from physical injuries (i.e. whiplash, broken bones, concussions), survivors of car collisions also experience emotional distress. Mental health difficulties such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression are health issues survivors of severe crashes may exhibit.

There are various types of psychological therapies which help treated PTSD, including eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR is a supplementary trauma-focused therapy which includes elements from other effective psychotherapies. It requires the person suffering from PTSD to focus attention on a traumatic memory while he or she simultaneously tracks the therapist's finger with his or her eyes, and then engages in a restructuring of the memory.

Eye movements are the most common form of bilateral stimulation; however, stimulation may also be auditory or sensory. They act by using dual attention tasks to help the person process the traumatic incident while focusing on negative trauma-related memories, thoughts, and emotions during the performance of a task which requires a bilateral stimulation (e.g. eye movements, tones, hand tapping) until a development in more positive trauma-related thoughts. Since its discovery in the late 1980s, EMDR has been known as one of the treatments of choice for PTSD.

If you suffered an injury in a car accident or PTSD caused by a negligent driver in New Mexico, contact our Albuquerque personal injury lawyer at Berenson & Associates, P.C. and schedule a consultation today.

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