What are the Barriers When Treating Youth with EMDR Who Have Experienced Childhood Physical Abuse?

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Doucette, Keisha
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This paper examined Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) for the treatment of youth who experienced childhood physical abuse. EMDR was primarily reviewed as an independent therapy intervention but was also compared to alternative therapies. Through this, it can be better identified if there are barriers to using EMDR as a trauma therapy on an under-researched demographic as currently, there is extensive research on EMDR and those over eighteen. However, treating trauma during the earlier developmental periods can better assist and aid in the healing process and potentially defer the development of psychopathologies and health concerns later in life. As EMDR has conflicting evidence and understanding as to how it works, furthering the understanding of its effects can provide knowledge and understanding to the clinical field and overall population as to whether it should be more considered as a credible trauma intervention. The author then explored ten quantitative peer-reviewed studies and critically analyzed and contrasted each study at various stages. This information was then compiled and explained to enhance the effects that EMDR has on treating youth with trauma. Conclusions demonstrated that EMDR is an effective standalone treatment and there were no clinically significant results compared to alternative modalities. Thus, no clear-cut barriers were noted to using EMDR with youth who experienced childhood physical abuse.
EMDR , youth , childhood physical abuse