Fiona Rogerson – Perinatal and Trauma Counselling

Online EMDR Therapy: A Safe and Effective Alternative

emdr online fiona rogerson perinatal and trauma counselling

Online EMDR Therapy: An effective alternative to in-person sessions

Can EMDR be done online?

Yes, absolutely! EMDR can be done online AND it’s just as effective. In fact, we do it daily as perinatal and birth trauma counsellors working with people right across Australia. If the emerging research did not support the proven effectiveness of the use of EMDR online, we would not do it. Period. 

What is EMDR?

EMDR is a therapeutic approach used to support individuals to process and heal from past trauma. It is an evidence-based treatment that involves structured work with memories of events or experiences, bodily or somatic sensations, core self beliefs, and emotions. The aim of treatment is to lessen the intensity of the emotional, bodily, and thought remnants of painful past experiences.  

EMDR for birth trauma works to lessen the magnitude or severity of the continued experience of that memory without eliminating the memory itself.  It works immediately and can reduce trauma symptoms, such as flashbacks, anxiety, intrusive thoughts, and intrusive memories, quickly.

For many it is life changing.  Which is why I went forward to pursue training in it.  I’ve experienced it myself and I know it works.

What the research tells us about online EMDR Therapy

With so many people now accessing mental health support remotely, we have access to a growing body of research into the differences between in-person and remote or online therapy

For the most part, the research has found no difference in client satisfaction between online and in-person therapy.

A specific study into the delivery of teletherapy to veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder found that in the majority of cases online counselling was found to be as effective in reducing PTSD symptoms as in-person counselling. In some situations, teletherapy helped to increase the take-up of services. Overall, the veterans using teletherapy reported high levels of satisfaction.

EMDR therapy online

The research around remote EMDR has also shown it to be equally as effective as in-person EMDR (1). 

As with any type of therapy, different approaches are required for different people and different circumstances.For example, your therapist will likely want to check with you that you have some basic requirements in place to ensure safe and effective EMDR sessions. These could include:

  • A reliable and stable internet connection
  • Access to video conferencing software with encryption capability. (e.g. Skype, Zoom)
  • A desktop computer/laptop/iPad/tablet with speakers and/or a connection to headphones
  • Have a large enough screen (for example: a desktop monitor, laptop screen or even a tablet). This is because your eyes will be required to travel along a large enough plane of movement between your left and right
  • A private, relatively quiet space/room with minimal distraction where you will not be disturbed during your session
  • Some water and tissues

Additionally they may ask you to have:

  • A small bouncy rubber ball or stress ball (an effective tool for grounding if needed
  • Adequate lighting for the therapist to be able to see you clearly to observe your eye movements and also observe how you are feeling based on your facial expressions, physiological changes and body language
  • You do not have risk factors for and have not been diagnosed with a dissociative disorder
  • You have the ability to soothe yourself when feeling distressed and regulate your feelings (your therapist should check this with you in your initial appointments).

In-person EMDR therapy may not be accessible for everyone and this is where virtual EMDR therapy is a more accessible alternative. 

How does virtual EMDR work?

Online EMDR offers you the space to work through the same therapeutic process used in in-person EMDR, from the comfort and convenience of your own home or chosen space.

In a virtual EMDR session, your therapist will follow the same steps and processes they would with an in-person session. 

EMDR occurs in 8 stages, with the eye movement work beginning in stage 4. This allows plenty of time for you and your therapist to create a personalised treatment plan, discuss how EMDR will work, and identify and work through particular memories associated with a challenging event. 

Towards the end of the 8 stages, there will be plenty of opportunity to make sure sessions are closed in a safe way and that you have clarity on the next steps. 

Regardless of the environment in which you receive EMDR therapy, it’s important that you have a feeling of trust and safety between you and your therapist, and within the physical space you’re in for your session. For trauma and birth trauma support, it is also important that your therapist has completed the EMDR Protocols and training specific to treating trauma.

How to find a therapist who uses EMDR for birth trauma?

As with any therapy, the relationship is key. Finding a therapist is not always easy and not every therapist will be the right fit for you.  This relationship can take some time to develop, but make sure that if you do NOT feel comfortable, or if it feels unsafe in any way, that you address this with your therapist or try to find someone else to work with. With trauma work specifically, be sure the person you see can authentically connect with you and is experienced in the area you are looking to work on.

EMDR itself is a specialised training that requires a therapist with specific accredited EMDR training, and ongoing consultation with other EMDR therapists.

To find out more about how I can help you with EMDR for birth trauma, or to book your initial session with me, head to EMDR Therapy.



  1. Lenferink, L. I. M., Meyerbröker, K., & Boelen, P. A. (2020). PTSD treatment in times of COVID-19: A systematic review of the effects of online EMDR. Psychiatry research, 293, 113438.
  2. Dyer, A. S., de Young, K. P., & Porges, S. W. (2021). Efficacy of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Delivered via Telehealth in Adults with PTSD: A Systematic Review. Journal of EMDR Practice and Research, 15(3), 146-158.
  3. McGowan, I. W., Fisher, N., Havens, J., & Proudlock, S. (2021). An evaluation of eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy delivered remotely during the Covid–19 pandemic. BMC psychiatry, 21(1), 1-8.
  4. Sbarra, D. A., & Wheaton, M. G. (2020). No Place Like Home: EMDR for PTSD via Telehealth. Journal of EMDR Practice and Research, 14(3), 181-193.

birth trauma counselling online

Let's get to know each other

My name is Fiona Rogerson and I am a registered Trauma and Perinatal Perth Counsellor and Childbirth Educator. I work with women and men to overcome emotional and psychological hurdles surrounding birth trauma, childhood trauma, traumatic experiences, as well as conception, pregnancy, postpartum, parenting and identity.  I am also available to provide supervision, mentoring and professional development training and workshops.  I am based south of the river in Perth. 

Work with me

To work with me, email at fiona@fionarogerson.com.au or phone 0402 017 425.

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