Brainspotting vs EMDR – Comparing the Differences and Similarities

eye macroWritten by Veronica Turner

If you have a mental health condition like PTSD or trauma-related anxiety, it can be challenging to find a therapy that works best for you. But by learning about the various options out there, you can make a more informed decision.

Two effective methods are brainspotting and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing.

In the following guide, we will take a closer look at these two powerful techniques and delve into their workings, benefits, similarities, and differences, so you can determine which one is best for your personal therapeutic journey.


What Is Brainspotting?

Brainspotting is a type of therapy designed to help individuals to access, process, and overcome trauma.

Using a technique known as “dual attunement,” the therapist guides you in locating eye positions—also known as brainspots—that correlate with internal emotional experiences. It’s believed these brainspots are reflections of different areas of your brain. The concept behind brainspotting suggests that our brain processes information about traumatic events visually.

For instance, when pointed toward a particular direction, your eyes may trigger memories of distress or discomfort. Focusing on these points can help to unlock and process unresolved issues at a deeper level than traditional talk therapy offers.

Brainspotting can effectively assist with various conditions such as anxiety disorders, PTSD, physical or emotional trauma, and performance issues. Furthermore, it can potentially aid in the recovery from substance abuse or addiction.

Tailored to meet individual therapeutic needs, brainspotting caters to each person’s unique healing pace and style while promoting self-awareness and personal growth. Therefore, brainspotting can be enormously beneficial for people struggling with numerous emotional challenges.


What Is EMDR?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, or EMDR as it is more commonly known, is another therapeutic technique aimed largely at relieving the distress associated with traumatic memories.

This type of therapy involves recalling distressing events while the therapist directs your eye movements.

The process of EMDR is unique because it can bring about rapid and effective relief from trauma-related symptoms. It does this by allowing your brain to reprocess the experience in a way that more effectively mitigates emotional and physical responses.

EMDR is highly beneficial for a range of conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, panic attacks, and even disturbing life experiences that aren’t necessarily categorized as ‘trauma.’

One of the profound benefits of EMDR therapy is its ability to let individuals fully process past traumatic experiences and move forward in their lives. It has been widely acclaimed for its effectiveness in aiding recovery after psychological traumas, providing a path toward healing and well-being.


The Similarities of Brainspotting and EMDR

Now, let’s look at brainspotting vs. EMDR.

Both brainspotting and EMDR are gaining significant traction for their effectiveness in treating trauma and other distressing conditions. They share several of the same fundamental characteristics in how they operate.

For instance, both therapies tap into the body’s natural ability to self-heal by processing and releasing traumatic memories.

Additionally, each therapy requires the individual to recall specific distressing events while the therapist uses a technique to guide their focus — eye movements in EMDR or specific eye positions in brainspotting.

Furthermore, both methods advocate for integrating traditional psychotherapeutic practices with more modern techniques for a comprehensive therapeutic experience.


The Differences Between Brainspotting and EMDR

While brainspotting and EMDR share similarities, there are distinct differences that set them apart too.

In EMDR, external stimuli such as finger movements or sounds direct the patient’s eye movements; while in brainspotting, the therapist helps the patient to identify a specific eye position that can trigger and process responses to traumatic events.

Additionally, the two modalities diverge in their pacing.

EMDR generally follows a more structured protocol and tends to be faster-paced, allowing for quicker processing of trauma. Conversely, brainspotting encourages a slower, more individual-paced approach, offering time for the exploration of deeper emotional experiences.


How to Decide Which Method Is Best for You

Deciding between EMDR and brainspotting largely depends on your personal needs, comfort levels, and the type of trauma or distress you’re dealing with.

If you prefer a more structured approach with quicker results, EMDR might be the right pick for you. However, if you value a slow-paced method that allows more time for exploring deep-seated emotions, brainspotting could be the better option.

It’s advisable to speak about both techniques with a mental health professional who is knowledgeable about both methods. They can provide guidance based on their understanding of your unique situation and help you to make an informed choice.


Author Bio.

Veronica Turner is a health and lifestyle writer with over 10 years of experience. She creates compelling content on nutrition, fitness, mental health, and overall wellness.



Please also review AIHCP’s Health Care Life Coach Certificate program and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  These programs are online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification.


CPR Guidelines – What’s New in the Medical Field?

CPR done in hospital settingWritten by Sam Darwin

It is common for the American Heart Association (AHA) to update its CPR guidelines every five years. These guidelines result from a meticulous evidence review process that lasts several years. But in 2015, the organization decided to take a different approach to this evaluation process and standards. It unveiled a new strategy that uses ongoing, online evidence evaluation. 

This new adjustment is necessary as it makes it possible to assimilate different scientific breakthroughs. Therefore, they ensure they are more effective and can introduce the guidelines across hospitals and communities. 

In 2020, the AHA organization released its guidelines under the new procedure. The policies contain 491 specific guidelines for CPR for laypeople and medical professionals. 

This article will define CPR and the best time to use it. Besides, it will also expound more on the latest advancement of CPR in the medical field. 

CPR and CPR Training?

In a medical emergency, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) can help to save a person’s life in case of breathing complications or when their heart stops. To perform CPR the right way, you must either undergo CPR training or be CPR-certified. Such training sessions do not mandate physical presence and can even be taken online.

When a person is experiencing cardiac arrest, their heart will be unable to pump blood to the rest of the body, including the brain and lungs. Medical care is highly recommended during this state, as death can occur within minutes.  

CPR is effective as it imitates the heart’s pumping action and uses chest compressions. It is effective as each compression supports the body’s natural blood circulation. 

Remember that heart attacks and cardiac arrest are different. When the heart’s blood supply is cut off, a patient will have a heart attack. Besides, during a heart attack, a person can speak and breathe. 

When a person is undergoing a heart attack, they may not need CPR. But it is safe to rush this person to a nearby hospital. This is because cardiac arrest is more likely to occur after a heart attack. 

The Latest CPR Guidelines in the Medical Field

1. Encourages Layperson to Administer CPR

Most of the AHA CPR guidelines focus on CPR treatment practices for medical professionals. However, the organization has spent a lot of time updating its standards for laypeople’s education and training also. So you can renew your CPR card online as the organization aims to make it more accessible. 

This is because recent statics revealed that about 350,000 adult patients went into cardiac arrest outside hospitals in 2015. And before EMS teams arrived, less than 40% of the patients received CPR from bystanders, while 12% received AED use. 

According to reports, the rate of cardiac arrests outside of a hospital has reached a severe plateau since 2012. That’s why AHA is keen to promote online CPR training for a layperson in its latest guidelines. This will ensure they have self-confidence in performing life-saving CPR. 

2. As a Layperson, You Should Start CPR Immediately

This has been among the requirements from the 2010 AHA guidelines. A lay rescuer shouldn’t bother to check for a pulse in case a patient suddenly collapses. The right thing to do is assume cardiac arrest and start CPR immediately. 

The latest 2020 guidelines confirmed that recommendation. They encourage lay rescuers to do CPR right away in such circumstances and not waste time checking for a pulse. 

This is because most non-medical practitioners often find it challenging to find a pulse, especially in emergencies.  Besides, CPR first aid is less dangerous even if the patient is not in cardiac arrest. 

3. Advice on Online Video Training for Layperson CPR

The latest AHA guidelines encourage accessibility and education for laypeople as well. It is vital to have CPR training available to anyone who cares about saving lives. 

AHA recommendations from 2015 state that online self-learning paired with hands-on, instructor-led training for layperson CPR should be considered alternatives to traditional in-person seminars.

Additionally, the research proved that video-based online CPR training and self-directed teaching have no significant difference from in-person training. So if you’re a layperson CPR, you can take CPR certification online, which will still apply according to the 2020 AHA guidelines. 

With these new guidelines, AHA hopes many people will feel encouraged to pursue a CPR certification. This is because this type of training is available widely. Besides, if you need a CPR renewal certification, you can access it anytime. 

Moreover, the 2020 guidelines encourage lay rescuers to learn how to administer Naloxone to patients experiencing a drug overdose. Besides, they also encourage middle and high schools to introduce CPR training to establish a sense of confidence and familiarity at a young age for many lay rescuers. 

4. A Mobile System That Can Alert Trained Laypersons CPRCPR First Aid Training Concept

The latest CPR guidelines encourage people to leverage the latest mobile phone technologies. This will aid in notifying the CPR and AED-trained bystanders in case of an emergency with a cardiac arrest patient. 

This technology will make it quick and simple for dispatchers to notify trained CPR volunteers and bystanders in case of an emergency in a neighborhood. This will be a vital accomplishment as it increases the likelihood that cardiac arrest patients will receive life-saving CPR before the EMTs arrive. 

Moreover, the Internal Liaison on Resuscitation (ILCOR) supports this advice, as its thorough analysis found that a mobile warning system might speed up trained bystander responses. And as a result, it will increase the number of cardiac arrests patients receiving bystander CPR. Besides, this will raise the survival rates for cardiac arrest patients outside hospitals. 

5. Quality of Adult CPR With Chest Compressions

Regarding adult CPR, the AHA guidelines reiterate the importance of quality chest compression. It is crucial as it ensures improved survival metrics, but the compression depth rate changes guidelines are only for adult patients. 

According to the guidelines, it is highly advised for adult patients to have chest compressions of at least 2 inches, but it shouldn’t be greater than 2.4 inches. 

But it is also encouraged to have a moderate strength for compression rates between 100-120 compressions per minute. 


CPR first aid is now considered one of the most crucial components of survival in case of a cardiac arrest. The latest guidelines by AHA are based on scientific research and intend to increase a person’s chances of survival in case of cardiac arrest. These new guidelines are necessary because there is always a 90% possibility of death in cardiac arrest cases outside the hospital. 

So the AHA guidelines recommendation for online video classes for layperson CPR training is a great place to start. This will help see an increase in survival for cardiac arrest patients. Also, it is vital to take a CPR certification renewal to stay updated with the latest CPR guidelines. 




Please also review AIHCP’s Health Care Life Coaching Certificate and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Life Coaching.