Recognizing and caring for those with dissociative disorders

Recognizing and caring for those with dissociative disorders:

An essential element of basic training in EMDR

Screen Shot 2016-08-07 at 11.50.55 AM

Due to the significant risks of adverse unintended effects in offering standard EMDR therapy procedures to those with unrecognized dissociative disorders, screening for the presence of a dissociative disorder is widely recognized as an essential element of EMDR therapy (Leeds 2016, p. 51, pp. 102-103; Paulsen, 1995; Shapiro, 2001, pp. 103-104, pp. 441-445).

Curiously there is no explicit mention of or standards for this training element in the EMDRIA basic training curriculum (EMDRIA, 2015). Among different providers of basic training in EMDR therapy there is wide variation in how issues are addressed regarding education, training and consultation on the nature of or screening for dissociative disorders. While total training cost, convenience of scheduling and completion rate are often top considerations when recommending or considering course selection, it is also important to find out how providers deal with helping participants with the complex cases that constitute the greater part of their caseloads.