Women's College Hospital - Health Care for Women, Revolutionized

Jump to body content

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a method of psychotherapy that can help a person work though the impact of traumatic experiences in her/his life by connecting to her/his inner resources.

It is a holistic therapeutic modality that involves focusing on an image, a belief, emotions and body sensations/experiences that are connected to the issue being worked on, and processing the issue by either listening to bilateral (back and forth) beats or holding onto tactile pulsers, or a combination of these options.

Historically, EMDR is an approach that has evolved out of research on trauma, particularly with regard to survivors of assault and/or abuse, who were dealing with the impacts of violence in their lives. It has been found to be similar to the way our dreams help us to process the thoughts and feelings connected to our every day life. As well, EMDR has been found to engage both the Right (Emotional Centre) and Left (Critical thinking) hemispheres of the brain, helping them to communicate to each other and enabling us to think and feel differently about the issues in our lives.

Who is EMDR for?

EMDR is for individuals who wish to process experiences of trauma or difficulty in their lives. Individuals who are interested in using EMDR should be in a stable place in their lives, as well as have sources of support, given that the processing can touch very difficult memories, emotions and beliefs.

Benefits of EMDR at SA/DVCC

There are numerous benefits that clients can receive from EMDR. As clients engage in the processing of experiences, they may notice some of the following benefits:

  • Connection to one's inner strengths, resources and personal power
  • Connection to one's body
  • Insights about oneself and relationships in one's life
  • A reduction of the severity of impacts of the sexual and/or domestic violence

Jump to top page

Location & Contact Information

Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Care Centre (SA/DVCC)
Women's College Hospital
76 Grenville St.
Ground floor (in the AACU), Room 1305
Toronto, ON M5S 1B2

Phone: 416-323-6040

Fax: 416-323-6489

Office Hours:
Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

A nurse is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Patients can be seen on-site at WCH between 7:30 a.m. on Monday to 11 p.m. on Friday. After 11 p.m. on Friday until 7:30 a.m. on Monday, patients should go to one of the emergency departments listed under the "Mobile Locations" tab and request the SA/DVCC service.

Accessibility
The hospital is fully accessible. There are wheelchair-accessible washrooms available throughout the hospital.


Online Care Package - NEW -

Access our online care package for additional self-care resources.

Our Publications


  • Fully affiliated with:
  • University of Toronto
  • A member of:
  • Council of Academic Hospitals of Ontario (CAHO)