one member of my family has depression for 32 years. has been diagnosed with everything in mental health illnesses. she is eating, drinking, sleeping, watching tv, 8-10 hours a day, playing with dog, has no interest in doing anything else.
what can we do
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@birdiemomma Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing therapy
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. You move your eyes back and forth (like REM eye movement during dreaming), think about the trauma, and then reprocess it with the counselor in safer words. That is a very simplified description!
EMDR has been a life changing process for me. It is truly fascinating how the brain works. Processing between sessions can sometimes worsen anxiety- but the payoff is well worth it. EMDR is work- it has challenged every part of me. If you are someone who suffers from any trama- I would highly recommend trying. My PTSD has greatly improved. I am still in the thick of my EMDR processing but am so grateful- For reference- I am 34 years old suffered mental/physical trama for the first 26 years of my life.
Me, too! Too few counselors are trained in this therapy!
@baci In case noone has welcomed you to Mayo Clinic Connect, please allow me to do so!
I sure am glad to read your post! Several years ago I had a few sessions with a therapist who is trained in EMDR, and I agree, it is work. Sometimes unpleasant as we come face-to-face with core issues. But getting through the hurdles, the way we feel later, and how much better life can look for us is a great result. I recall being stubborn, and feeling I maybe didn't want to address everything but once the ball got rolling, there was no way to stop it.
For those who have done EMDR, did you feel the physical and mental exhaustion I felt? How did you honor yourself going through this? At first it was difficult for me to convince myself it was "a good thing" to do. There are many different roads to take when addressing depression, and not every road is the right fit for each person. When we find the right combination for ourselves, it is life-changing!
@gingerw I did try EMDR with a therapist who specialized in this but my reaction did not make me a candidate for this type of therapy. However, I do encourage others to seek out and try other options of treatment.
I absolutely agree. The first therapist that I did EMDR with was very close minded and actually traumatized me more. During covid my NP recommended another therapist- she does not live nearby but we do telehealth. What a difference. Thank you for your feedback. My sister-in-law has been also doing EMDR after I referred her and she said it has changed her life. I always say that the bad things that have happened to me have given me such empathy and I will not waste it. Idk if you are a religious person but I believe everything happens for a reason and that my horrible experiences will never be wasted. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way.
I agree! EMDR is a painful process- like a surgery. The only way to remove the trauma is to process it. It sucks I agree- I have Long Covid for a year now and we have to do the sessions based on what kind of day I am having. I do become physically ill, have nightmares and increased anxiety- all of these systems subside and then I am reminded the process is worth it.
Sending positive thoughts your way- it takes a brave person to face anxiety, trauma and fears head on! Hope you continue to feel good. Thank you for sharing- feels so good to know I am not alone.
There are other methods used as well. My therapist uses hand tapping. This summary of the process – according to my own experience.
My therapist and I pick the most traumatic experience (I have severe anxiety and PTSD)
Once that event is picked- your will be lead through processing the event with the therapist with you- its as if you go back in time mentally and physically. You recall what you see and other guided questions.
Then I am asked where I feel the trauma in my body- it is scary what your body remembers. We use different exercises to process out the pain. The is a repetitive process- I recalled the same trauma for a year and now I am seeing amazing results. Please feel free to ask any questions! Sending positive thoughts your way
When she starts feeling better, she must still take her medications! She has a chemical imbalance in her brain and can't be cured, but she can be in remission. Talk therapy is also important, although it can be spaced out so appointments are less frequent. A trusted therapist can recognize when symptoms worsen or improve and can discuss with her whether meds need to be reviewed or tweaked.