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July 20, 2020 54 min
In this episode of Functional Medicine Research, I speak with therapist Martina Barnes about how EMDR can help people overcome trauma.  I have personally used EMDR with great success in overcoming trauma and I routinely refer for EMDR to help patients get well.  One of the most important aspects of practicing functional medicine is understanding how much trauma can be connected to chronic illness.  Many patients won't get well until they address their past and how it is affecting their current health issues.  All the healthy diets, supplements, exercise, sleep, exposure to nature, community etc. won't be enough if there is underlying trauma history wearing you down.   Mental health professionals are severely underutilized yet they should be the first line of therapy for the majority of patients with chronic illness.  Unfortunately, they usually end up being the last.  This interview should help shed some light on the benefits of EMDR and how it can help you heal and get well for lasting health and well-being. Below is a transcript on overcoming trauma with EMDR Dr. Hedberg: Well, welcome everyone to "Functional Medicine Research." I'm Dr. Hedberg and really excited today to have Martina Barnes on the show. Martina has a Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology from Western Carolina University and that was completed in the year 2000. So, many, many years of experience and Martina's theoretical underpinnings are informed by attachment theories of human development which determine our interpersonal basis for relationships. And when working with individuals together, we seek to understand the attachment wounds developed in childhood and how your style impacts your relationship with yourself and others. And Martina says you can transform your life by transforming the way your brain and nervous system are wired. She utilizes a range of evidence-based yet cutting-edge holistic modalities such as Trauma Resilience Model, EMDR, which is what we're gonna be talking about today in detail, Internal Family Systems, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, and mindfulness, and Martina has been a speaker and educator at trauma recovery conferences and seminars for victims of murder, suicide, and even sudden death. So, Martina, welcome to the show. Martina: Thanks, Nick, and great to be here. I'm excited to share what I know about EMDR. Dr. Hedberg: Yeah. I'm excited as well. This is something that I've been wanting someone on the show for a long time to talk about EMDR. This is something that I've used myself and recommended to many patients. So, why don't we just talk about some of the basics and why don't you give us an idea of what exactly is EMDR and what does it stand for? Martina: Yeah. Great. So, EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing. And it's a modality that originally only used eye movements to help give the brain bilateral stimulation to help clear trauma. It's gone to incorporate other types of bilateral stimulation. Maybe hand taps or also bilateral auditory tones can be incorporated as well. And it's one of the most powerful trauma recovery modalities that I've ever utilized. It was discovered in 1988. So, it's been around quite a long time. Dr. Hedberg: And who invented EMDR? Martina: Francine Shapiro who was a psychologist invented EMDR quite by accident. She loved to take long walks and when she was walking, she would notice if she was thinking about something that's setting or something disturbing that her eyes would dart back and forth, back and forth, and then they would stop darting, and she would notice that she had cleared that disturbing thought. So, it occurred to her that she might be able to develop some kind of protocol that would involve the eye movements to help clear disturbing thoughts. And she first decided to try this on veterans who had PTSD. Dr. Hedberg: Fascinating. And so, this modality, so, like you said,
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