Eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing aims to reduce distress that some memories bring on
In a new mental health documentary series with Oprah Winfrey, Prince Harry is seen undergoing a form of therapy known as EMDR (eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing) to treat unresolved anxiety stemming from the death of his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, when he was 12.
EMDR was developed in the 1980s by a US psychologist, Francine Shapiro. While walking in a park, Shapiro suspected that her eye movements were lessening the distress of her own traumatic memories. She tested the approach on others and over time built up a standardised psychological therapy for treating people with traumatic memories.