Project Description

Brainspotting-EMDR-based trauma therapy in Vancouver, WA

What is Brainspotting?

Brainspotting is a neurological-based, bilateral trauma therapy that specializes in utilizing visual “brainspots” to tap into the midbrain (the part of your brain that processes emotions, memories, and body sensations). Brainspotting can be utilized for trauma, PTSD, grief, chronic pain, anxiety, stress, and depression. It often helps alleviate symptoms faster by using your whole brain (midbrain), versus traditional talk therapy, where you stay in your prefrontal cortex (which limits full body healing). When you use your whole brain to heal, you can rewire your brain neurologically and somatically- and often patients see much quicker and long-lasting results.

How was Brainspotted created?

Brainspotting was created by David Grand, PhD, who was trained in both EMDR and Somatic Experiencing- both of which are trauma-based therapies. David wanted to create a trauma therapy with fewer protocols that combined these two treatments. Similar to EMDR, Brainspotting uses a bilateral eye movement to utilize both sides of the brain. Brainspotting also uses bilateral music to assist even more with getting into the midbrain. Patients often describe this music as “brain massage.” It is often very relaxing for patients. This helps patients to rewire and reprocess trauma in a calm, safe state. It helps their flight or fight/emotional/physical responses to also become less triggered when working with the part of the brain responsible for these sensations and memories.

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What to Expect in our Brainspotting work?

You will find your “brainspots” by following the therapist cues to move your eyes laterally and vertically along with the bilateral music. The therapist will guide you through these exercises. Your body will intuitively know where to stop and rest along these pathways, and the therapist will also look for external cues. You will always check in with the therapist throughout this process, to make sure you are comfortable and feeling safe.

Who can try Brainspotting?

Most patients who have emotional or physical ailments will be able to try Brainspotting. Since it is a nontraditional and safe approach, it will take patients who are open to new neurological approaches to therapy, or who have tried other approaches and want to try something different. Sometimes if patients’ symptoms are too severe, Brainspotting may not be the most appropriate treatment. The therapist will let patients know if Brainspotting is contraindicated. However, Brainspotting is a widely used neurological treatment that is getting great results!
Please see the Brainspotting webpage for more info:

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