EMDR is a must-have trauma treatment tool and telehealth is here to stay…but how can you get the most out of your sessions with virtual clients?
Successful utilization of EMDR via telehealth requires clinicians to adapt, be flexible, and learn
. It also requires clients to utilize skills in settings where they’re having to manage daily stresses and triggers. This can be a great way to get them to practice resourcing skills.
When entering telehealth sessions, it’s essential for the clinician to lay the groundwork for what’s going to happen, being especially mindful of how to collaborate with the client. For example, what will keep the session on track when the environment becomes distracting or triggering? It’s essential to focus on ways the clinician and client can collaborate, and this will in turn build rapport.
Telehealth allows the clinician to enter the client’s world. Consider building collaboration and rapport by having the client show some aspects of their environment: a picture of their family, something they ground with, or even the place they go to calm down and get re-centered.
But in order to keep the client in their window of tolerance, we have to establish how to safely navigate their environment
. What will happen if there are distractions or the Internet connection drops? Before beginning virtual EMDR, it’s important to take the time to establish what’s going to be grounding.
These distractions can be seen as downfalls, but they also give clients the opportunity to create new strengths, as well as build their resiliency and confidence.
Learn more about the unique roles of the clinician and client in a virtual setting, as well as the necessary steps to creating a safe virtual space in this short video from Megan McQuary, LCSW, CSUD, EMDR CIT:
Ready for your next telehealth session? Read our next blog next blog
to get Megan McQuary’s favorite virtual EMDR resources.