Sexual Abuse

How EMDR Can Help Adults Heal From Childhood Sexual Abuse

Certain adults recall their experiences of sexual abuse, while others do not. Recalling is not the only indicator that you have been sexually abused, nor is it a prerequisite for healing. Even traumatic memories can resurface in the form of reactions in your current life. Some examples of these reactions include physical symptoms such as dissociation, avoiding particular people or places, intrusive thoughts and/or nightmares, triggers in your current life, hyper-vigilance despite the relative safety of your situation, difficulty having sex without drinking, and/or extreme muscle tightness and anxiety stored in your body.

The effects of childhood sexual abuse affect physical, psychological, and social functioning. They generate significant psychopathological alterations such as emotional alterations, post-traumatic stress disorder PTSD, depression, sexual dysfunctions, perceived sexual dissatisfaction, and difficulties in self-acceptance of one’s body. Specific interventions have proven to be effective in helping people cope with traumatic experiences.

EMDR and TF-CBT, both therapeutic approaches, can be useful to intervene effectively in adult subjects who present significant symptoms after suffering childhood/adolescence trauma from being sexually abused.