EMDR therapy in the treatment of moral trauma/injury

The enduring nature of PTSD within military and veteran communities purports a proposed link between mental illness and moral trauma/injury.

Changes in both the DSM-5 [2013] and ICD-11 [2018] PTSD classifications acknowledge the co-existence of trauma and morality suggesting a tentative argument for a new medico-legal diagnosis beyond both PTSD and Complex PTSD – Moral Injury. However, the lack of consensus about its nature and measurement resulted in its non-inclusion as a distinct diagnosis within the latest iterations (Jones, 2020). 

Moral trauma/ injury is a transgression which violates our core assumptions of ‘right’ and  ‘wrong’, values, beliefs, and conceptual framework of ‘self’. At its core, moral trauma/ injury  is borne out of either acts of omission or commission. This presentation will explore the utilisation of EMDR therapy as a treatment intervention focussing on the importance of  subjectivity within the human experience, and how this in turn reflects our values, belief systems, intentions, emotions, our sense of purpose and identity.

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