23+ EMDR Therapy Statistics and Facts: From Salary to Success Rates


  •     In the United States, there are 198,811 therapists and 81,000 psychologists, of which over 20,000 utilize EMDR Therapy.
  •     In the United States, there are an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 registered EMDR Therapists.
  •     There are more than 10,000 EMDR Therapists in the UK, with around 5,000 being registered with EMDRIA.
  •     In total, there are an estimated 150,000 practitioners worldwide offering EMDR therapy.
  •     The average annual pay for an EMDR therapist stands around $82,926.
  •     The salary of an EMDR therapist may go as high as $140,500 per annum.
  •     EMDR therapists in New York and California earn higher than their counterparts residing in other states.
  •     The least-paying state for an EMDR therapist is Arkansas where the average salary is reported to be around $62,772 per year.
  •     Since 2016, over 7 million individuals have been successfully treated by a network of EMDR therapists spanning 130 countries.
  •     100% of single-trauma sufferers and 77% of people impacted by multiple traumas show no diagnosable PTSD following six EMDR sessions.
  • All told, upwards of 30 controlled studies deemed EMDR a success.

In 1987, Dr. Francine Shapiro introduced EMDR Therapy, known for its exceptional results and weekly or biweekly delivery. This eight-phase approach encompasses history-taking, client preparation, target memory assessment, and memory processing for adaptive resolution during phases four to seven. The process concludes with an evaluation of treatment outcomes in phase eight.

History of EMDR Therapy

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy was developed by psychologist Francine Shapiro in the late 1980s. While walking in a park one day, she noticed that her own disturbing thoughts became less intense as her eyes moved rapidly back and forth. She then experimented with this technique on other people and found that it helped them process traumatic memories more effectively.

How EMDR Therapy Works?

EMDR therapy is based on the idea that traumatic memories are stored in an unprocessed form in the brain, and that this can lead to psychological symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and flashbacks. The goal of EMDR therapy is to help patients reprocess these memories so they no longer have a negative impact on their mental health.

The process typically involves eight phases. In the first phase, the therapist works with the patient to develop a treatment plan and establish a therapeutic relationship. In the second phase, the patient identifies a specific memory or event they want to target in therapy.

In the third phase, the patient focuses on this memory while simultaneously engaging in bilateral stimulation (BLS), which can involve eye movements, tapping, or other forms of sensory input. The BLS is thought to activate both sides of the brain and facilitate processing of the traumatic memory.

In subsequent phases, the therapist helps the patient identify and process related memories and beliefs that may be contributing to their symptoms. The final phase involves closure and reflection on progress made during treatment.

Eight-Phase EMDR Therapy: An Overview

Phase Purpose Procedures
History taking Obtain background information
  Identify suitability for EMDR treatment
  Identify processing targets from events in client’s life according to standardized three-pronged protocol
Standard history-taking questionnaires and diagnostic psychometrics
  Review of selection criteria
  Questions and techniques to identify 1) past events that have laid the groundwork for the pathology, 2) current triggers, and 3) future needs
Preparation Prepare appropriate clients for EMDR processing of targets Education regarding the symptom picture
  Metaphors and techniques that foster stabilization and a sense of personal control
Assessment Access the target for EMDR processing by stimulating primary aspects of the memory Elicit the image, negative belief currently held, desired positive belief, current emotion, and physical sensation and baseline measures
Desensitization Process experiences toward an adaptive resolution (no distress) Standardized protocols incorporating eye movements (taps or tones) that allow the spontaneous emergence of insights, emotions, physical sensations, and other memories
Installation Increase connections to positive cognitive networks Enhance the validity of the desired positive belief and fully integrate the positive effects within the memory network
Body Scan Complete processing of any residual disturbance associated with the target Concentration on and processing of any residual physical sensations
Closure Ensure client stability at the completion of an EMDR session and between sessions Use of guided imagery or self-control techniques if needed
  Briefing regarding expectations and behavioral reports between sessions
Reassessment Ensure maintenance of therapeutic outcomes and stability of client Evaluation of treatment effects
  Evaluation of integration within larger social system

Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3951033/

Chapter 1: Key Therapists Statistics in the United States

There are a number of therapists in the United States practicing differing methods to treat their patients. Here is an overview of key statistics:

  •     In the United States, there are 198,811 therapists, of which over 20,000 utilize EMDR Therapy.
  •     Among these therapists, approximately 81,000 are psychologists.
  •     Gender distribution shows that 63.6% are female, while 24.4% are male.
  •     The average age of these therapists is 41 years.
  •     Common ethnic backgrounds include White (72.6%), Asian (11.3%), Hispanic or Latino (7.9%), and African-American (4.0%).
  •     Women in this profession earn 94% of what their male counterparts earn.
  •     Approximately 12% identify as LGBTQ+.
  •     A significant portion, 81%, prefer working with private companies, while a majority of EMDR therapists also offer remote services.

Therapist Statistics in the US

Total Number 198,811
EMDR Therapists 20,000


Therapist Statistics by Gender

Male 24.4%
Female 63.6%
Non-binary, LGBTQ+, Others 12%


Therapist Statistics by Race

White 72.6%
Asian 11.3%
Hispanic or Latino 7.9%
African-American or Black 4.0%


Chapter 2: EMDR Therapists Statistics Worldwide:

Since EMDR Therapy is an emerging technique in psychotherapy, it has not yet reached its potential. Nevertheless, there is a significant number of EMDR therapists around the world who keep showing promising growth.

  •     In total, there are more than 150,000 EMDR therapists in the world registered with EMDRIA.
  •     The numbers might increase significantly if unregistered ones practicing similar techniques are taken into consideration.

Chapter 3: EMDR Therapists in the UK and US:

With more than 198,800 therapists in the United States, a large number of them have started employing EMDR techniques to treat their patients. While it is hard to give an exact number of EMDR therapists around the world, they can be estimated to be around 10,000 to 20,000. The same number can be expected to practice this method in UK.

EMDR Therapists in the UK:

  •     More than 10,000 EMDR Therapists are available in the UK, as reported by the EMDR Association UK.
  •     Approximately 5,000 therapists in the UK are registered with EMDRIA.

EMDR Therapists in the US:

  •     In the United States, there are an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 registered EMDR Therapists.
  •     It goes without saying that foregoing statistics represent the number of registered EMDR therapists, the total number practicing this method might go up to 20,000.

Comparison of EMDR Therapists in the UK and US:

Country Total number of EMDR Therapists Number of Registered EMDR Therapists
United States 20,000 10,000 – 15,000
United Kingdom 10,000 5,000


Chapter 3: Salary Statistics of EMDR Therapists:

While it is difficult to give the exact amount of financial compensation received by EMDR therapists in the United States and elsewhere, these estimated numbers might give an insight as to what one can expect.

  •     The average annual pay for an EMDR therapist stands around $82,926.
  •     This makes for an hourly rate of $39.87 and around $1,594 per week.
  •     The salary of an EMDR therapist may go as high as $140,500 per annum.
Average Annual Salary Average Monthly Salary Average Weekly Salary Average Hourly Salary
$82,926 $6,910 $1,594 $39.87


Chapter 4: Highest and Least-paying States for EMDR Therapists

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment of mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists, which includes EMDR therapists, is projected to grow 25 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is due to the increased demand for mental health services.

Highest Paying States for EMDR Therapists:

EMDR therapists in New York and California earn higher than their counterparts residing in other states. The former may earn up to $105,800 annually.

  • While NY and CA are the highest-paying states for EMDR therapists, Vermont and Maine are the ones not to be missed as their average annual pay ranges between $80,000 to $90,000 a year.
  • These states are followed by the likes of Massachusetts, Nevada and New Jersey where the average annual pay can range between $83,000 to $84,000.

Least Paying States for EMDR Therapists:

The least-paying state for an EMDR therapist might be Arkansas where the average salary is reported around $62,772 per year.

  • The states with the lowest pay for an EMDR therapist are Nebraska, Kentucky and North Carolina where the average annual pay ranges between $62,000 to $63,000.

Chapter 5: EMDR Therapists Average Income across the States:

As mentioned earlier, EMDR therapists in California and New York have the highest average annual income while those in Nebraska, Kentucky, and North Carolina have the lowest average income.

The following table shows the average income across the major US states.

State Annual Salary Monthly Pay Weekly Pay Hourly Wage
New York $94,601 $7,883 $1,819 $45.48
California $93,343 $7,778 $1,795 $44.88
New Jersey $83,011 $6,917 $1,596 $39.91
Washington $82,634 $6,886 $1,589 $39.73
Pennsylvania $79,134 $6,594 $1,521 $38.05
Illinois $74,661 $6,221 $1,435 $35.89
Virginia $73,401 $6,116 $1,411 $35.29
Michigan $68,810 $5,734 $1,323 $33.08
Texas $68,468 $5,705 $1,316 $32.92
Nebraska $66,512 $5,542 $1,279 $31.98
Kentucky $63,810 $5,317 $1,227 $30.68
North Carolina $63,385 $5,282 $1,218 $30.47

Source: https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/What-Is-the-Average-EMDR-Therapist-Salary-by-State


Chapter 6: EMDR Therapy So Far:

EMDR therapy has demonstrated superiority over Prozac in trauma treatment, according to various clinical studies.

  • Since 2016, over 7 million individuals have been successfully treated by a network of 150,000 EMDR therapists spanning 130 countries.
  • Dr. Shapiro, the visionary behind EMDR therapy, established EMDRIA, which now includes more than 15,000 registered EMDR therapists in the US and elsewhere.

Chapter 7: How Effective is EMDR Therapy:

Various studies and research have shown that EMDR therapy is quite effective in treating trauma and trauma-related conditions. Some of these studies have also indicated its effectiveness in treating chronic and acute pain in patients. The below statistics give a clearer picture of its effectiveness:

Effectiveness of EMDR Therapy in PTSD Patients:

EMDR Therapy is especially effective in PTSD patients.

  • 100% of single-trauma sufferers and 77% of people impacted by multiple traumas show no diagnosable PTSD following six EMDR sessions.

Effectiveness of EMDR Therapy in Combat-related Traumas:

The Therapy also shows promising results when it comes to alleviating combat-related traumas in military personnel and veterans.

  • Current and former combatants researched at a Veterans Affairs facility showed a 78% reduction in PTSD symptoms following 12 EMDR sessions.
  • A randomized EMDR study of non-military participants recorded that 90 percent of sexual assault victims experienced PTSD relief following three 1.5-hour sessions.

Effectiveness of EMDR Therapy in PTSD due to accidents and assaults:

It has equally been successful in patients experiencing PTSD due to accidents and assualts.

  • PTSD due to accidents and assault was relieved by 67% after EMDR six sessions.
  •  All told, upwards of 30 controlled studies deemed EMDR a success.

Chapter 8: Why Choose EMDR Therapy?

EMDR therapy is a unique form of psychotherapy that is distinct from other modalities. While traditional talk therapy focuses on exploring and processing emotions and thoughts through conversation, EMDR therapy works by utilizing bilateral stimulation to help patients process traumatic memories.

Another key difference between EMDR and other forms of psychotherapy is the speed at which progress can be made. Some patients report feeling significant relief after just a few sessions of EMDR therapy, while traditional talk therapies can take months or even years to see results.

Additionally, EMDR therapy often involves less talking than other forms of psychotherapy. Instead, patients focus on specific memories or experiences while engaging in bilateral stimulation, allowing for a more targeted and efficient approach to healing.

Chapter 9: EMDR Therapy Endorsement:

EMDR is endorsed by more than 15 international and national organizations including but not limited to:

  • National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)
  • The World Health Organization (WHO)
  • United Kingdom Department of Health
  • American Psychiatric Association
  • International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies
  • US Department of Veterans Affairs & Department of Defense, and
  • EMDR International Association.

Chapter 10: Studies and Results of EMDR Therapy:

Apart from showing exceptional success in real-life psychotherapy, EMDR has also proved to be effective when it comes to scientific studies.

  • Seven of 10 studies reported EMDR therapy to be more rapid and/or more effective than trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy.
  • A study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health evaluated the effects of 8 sessions of EMDR therapy compared to 8 weeks of treatment with fluoxetine. EMDR was superior for the amelioration of both PTSD symptoms and depression.

Chapter 11: EMDR Therapy Long-term Statistics:

As per reports and studies, the benefits of EMDR therapy are long-term and maintained over time. Studies carried out to find an answer to this question show promising results.

  • One study carried out on civilians with a diagnosis of PTSD showed that treatment effects were maintained in eight out of nine studies.
  • Three studies were carried out with combat veterans. The study carried out by a psychologist which provided a full course of 12 weeks of treatment found benefits to be maintained 9 months after treatment.


In conclusion, EMDR therapy stands as a remarkable and highly effective approach to trauma treatment. With its roots tracing back to Dr. Francine Shapiro’s innovative work, EMDR has consistently delivered positive results. Its global reach, with over 7 million individuals successfully treated by dedicated therapists across 130 countries since 2016, underscores its significance. As a beacon of hope for trauma survivors, EMDR therapy continues to evolve, offering renewed possibilities for healing and recovery in the face of adversity. Its profound impact and continuous growth through organizations like EMDRIA demonstrate its enduring importance in the field of mental health.