What is EMDR

EMDR or Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing is a very effective psychotherapy for people suffering psychological, emotional and physical difficulties caused by traumatic experience.

EMDR can help people traumatised by accident, violence, sexual abuse and childhood neglect. It can help individuals suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and other extreme conditions including trauma related anxiety disorders and phobias.

How to arrange EMDR

To refer either yourself or someone else call 01592 206200.
Alternatively, you can write to us at:

Fife Alcohol Support Service
24 Hill Street

Please note this service has limited places available

From referral to assessment of need and help

Upon receipt of referral, FASS will contact the client and arrange a first session for a Psychological Formulation or assessment. This is designed will confirm the client’s suitability for EMDR. This is followed by an 8-phase therapeutic programme. 6-8 sessions may be required to complete this, though it's often less depending on the complexity of the client’s need.


Normally, someone experiencing a traumatic event will recover naturally and often quickly. Sometimes however, if someone is severely traumatised either by an overwhelming event or by being repeatedly subjected to distress, then this natural healing process can become overloaded. The brain becomes unable to cope, healing is blocked and memories becomes frozen in their original 'rawness'.

These memories may recur repeatedly as 'action replays'. These can be just as distressing as the original experience because the sensory images, sounds, feelings and smells that are locked in memory haven't changed.

How does EMDR work

EMDR uses eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation to stimulate the brain's natural ability to process information. During treatment, the client is asked to revisit his or her original traumatic experience(s). EMDR releases frozen memories allowing a natural healing to take place. Progress can often be rapid though this does depend on the complexity of a person's traumatic experience.

EMDR is not a talking therapy, though during a course of treatment it may be combined with elements of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy