My qualifications & testimonials
QUALIFICATIONS & TRAINING
Registered Mental Health Nurse.
Registered General Nurse.
Community Mental Health Nurse Certificate.
MSc Professional & Policy Studies.
BSc Psychosocial Interventions in the Management of Mental Illness.
PG diploma High Intensity Worker / CBT training.
IPT training for depression.
EMDR training / Parts 1 to 4.
* "Tom Anderson was exceptional. A highly experienced and skilled therapist - whose kindness, humour, approachability and amazing intuitive ability to connect has helped me immeasurably".
* "My treatment was very well planned and delivered by Tom via Zoom - it has made a huge difference".
* "I'm so glad that I accessed Tom's service - it has really helped me understand and move forward after struggling for so long".
* "Thank you for helping me through a difficult time in my life. I have appreciated your professional skill and expertise but also your kindness and patience".
* "Very positive. Tom is approachable and empathic. A real help - thank you".
* "An extremely positive experience, which has allowed me to function and enjoy my life once again".
* "Your help through CBT provided online has given me confidence, where it was really lacking. Thanks so much".
* "Tom always listened and I never felt like my problems were trivialised. He explored a range of therapies, which I was not aware of or would have previously considered. Overall I feel that I had a positive experience of therapy and left feeling more confident in my ability to deal with my anxiety. Thank you!"
How does EMDR work?
When a person is involved in a distressing event, they may feel overwhelmed and their brain may be unable to process the information like a normal memory. The distressing memory seems to become frozen on a neurological level. When the person recalls this memory, they can re-experience what they saw, heard, smelt, tasted or felt, and this can be quite intense. Sometimes the memories are so distressing, the person tries to avoid thinking about the event to avoid experiencing these feelings.
Some find that the distressing memories come to mind when something reminds them of the event, or sometimes the memories just seem to pop into the mind. The alternating left-right stimulation of the brain with eye movements, sounds or taps during EMDR, seems to stimulate the frozen or blocked information processing system.
In the process the distressing memories seem to lose their intensity, so that they are less disturbing and seem more like 'ordinary' memories. The effect is believed to be similar to that which occurs naturally during REM sleep (Rapid Eye Movement) when your eyes move rapidly from side to side. EMDR helps reduce distress of all the different kinds of memories, whether it was what you saw, heard, smelt, tasted, felt or thought.
What can I expect from my therapist?
EMDR is not simply the use of eye movements. Rather it is a comprehensive therapeutic approach with principles, protocols and procedures with the goal of reducing distress in the shortest period of time.
When you first meet with your therapist, he / she will spend time getting to know your history. This generally includes the kind of distress you are experiencing, the kind of difficulties you have experienced, if you have physical problems, if you are taking medication and explore the support you have. If your therapist feels EMDR is suited for your difficulty, then he / she will describe the EMDR model to you and explain the theory.
You can ask your therapist questions and express any concerns you may have. Your therapist will spend some time doing some relaxation exercises with you, which could include 'safe or pleasant place' exercises, guided visualisation, deep muscle relaxation. breathing retraining etc.
Once you and your therapist feel that you are sufficiently prepared, you can target a distressing memory with the eye movements or other forms of other left-right alternating stimulation, such as sounds or taps. Your therapist will ask you to select an image that represents the distressing event. You will then be asked to think about positive and negative thoughts, your feelings, the amount of distress you feel and where you feel it in your body. Your therapist will then begin the eye movements while you hold the image in your mind. After each set of eye movements your therapist will ask you what came to mind or what you noticed during the set. During these eye movements you may experience the distressing event quite intensely to start with, but this distress generally reduces as the memory is processed with EMDR.
Your therapist will continue with the eye movements until your distress is reduced as much as possible. He / she will then ask you to think about your positive thought and also check whether there is any part of your body where you still feel distress. Before the end of the session, your therapist will give you time to calm again, using safe-pleasant place exercise or relaxation techniques.
What will I feel like after the session?
EMDR treatment generates a certain amount of 'momentum' to your thinking and conscious awareness. In other words the treatment does not just stop immediately after your session. During your eye movement processing a lot of memories may come to mind and people find that afterwards they may think about these memories.
It is possible that you still might notice some distressing content to your memories. If so then during this time it is recommended that you take care of yourself and use your relaxation technique to soothe yourself. It is also advised that you do not do anything that requires concentration after your EMDR session, such driving or operating machinery. Some people report that after processing they seem to recall more aspects of the events that they hadn't thought about for a while.
Some report that they dream more. Everybody is different - so keep a note of your experience after the session and discuss this with your therapist. As the distress decreases with EMDR, people report feeling a sense of relief. At the end of EMDR therapy, many people report feeling no distress at all when recalling the particular event.
Where therapy can help and what it costs.
How do I know if CBT is going to be right for me?
CBT is a long established and evidence based therapy for depression and a number of anxiety conditions.
With depression, CBT is particularly effective in addressing negative thoughts and beliefs. These often exacerbate and maintain the difficulties. Within the sessions we can look at how you might have become more withdrawn and stopped doing some of the things you previously enjoyed.
CBT is also really helpful if you are struggling with anxiety and less confidence than usual. You may also be experiencing panic when thoughts, feelings and physical responses can combine to produce a reaction in which we don't feel in control. Because CBT is very practical and straightforward, you will soon understand what is happening and learn how to manage these situations.
Other conditions such social anxiety, health anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) also respond well to CBT.
You may find yourself having difficulties in the workplace, in your personal life or at college or university but not be sure of what is actually going wrong. It may be your confidence or self-esteem, which has taken a knock, you may not be sleeping well, you might be feeling angry and resentful but not understanding what to do about it. You may have a long term medical condition, which is impacting on your mood. Your relationship may be going through a difficult phase and it could be that some unhelpful behaviours have developed as a result. Whatever, your circumstances seeking help can be a really important first step. CBT may not be solution for everyone but because it is targeted and largely concerned with the here and now you will recognise whether it is working for you quickly.
WHAT IT COSTS.
The cost for therapy is £65 per one hour appointment. This fee includes any materials such as CDs or self-help books. In addition I can offer an email summary of each session for you to refer to. Treatment for an individual client would normally be between eight and twelve weekly appointments depending on specific need and requirement. It should be possible to give an indication of the recommended number at the first session.
I am also a recognised therapist with AXA PPP, BUPA and AVIVA.
ADDRESS FOR THE REGISTERED OFFICES OF CBT SOLUTIONS (please note no therapy takes place at this address):
Trinity House, 3 Trinity Street, Dorchester DT1 1TT.
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