Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing and Slow Wave Sleep: a Putative Mechanism of Action.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is considered highly efficacious for the treatment of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and has proved to be a valid treatment approach with a wide range of applications. However, EMDR's mechanisms of action is not fully understood. This is an active area of clinical and neurophysiological research, and several different hypotheses have been proposed.
This paper discusses a conjecture which focuses on the similarity between the delta waves recorded by electroencephalography during Slow Wave Sleep (SWS) and those registered upon typical EMDR bilateral stimulation (eye movements or alternate tapping) during recurrent distressing memories of an emotionally traumatic event. SWS appears to have a key role in memory consolidation and in the reorganization of distant functional networks, as well as Eye Movements seems to reduce traumatic episodic memory and favor the reconsolidation of new associated information.
The SWS hypothesis may put forward an explanation of how EMDR works, and is discussed also in light of other theories and neurobiological findings.

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Pagani M
Amann BL
Landin-Romero R
Carletto S
Frontiers media, Lausanne, Svizzera
Frontiers in Psychology 8 (2017). doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01935
info:cnr-pdr/source/autori:Pagani M, Amann BL, Landin-Romero R, Carletto S/titolo:Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing and Slow Wave Sleep: a Putative Mechanism of Action./doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01935/rivista:Frontiers in Psychology/anno:2017/pa
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Ritratto di Marco Pagani
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