An EFT study: Reducing anxiety in dental patients with EFT
Gratitude to Graham Temple for this data involving anxiety in a dental office. Out of 30 patients, 100% reported a reduction in anxiety.
In spite of all the many technological advances in dentistry, visits to the dentist still cause great anxiety. It is estimated that 1 in 3 adults suffers moderate to severe anxiety when faced with dental treatment, whilst in children the figure is similar. (British Dental Association, 1995).
This anxiety tends to make dental treatment more difficult, which only leads to further anxiety, as well as being stressful, time consuming & exhausting for the dentist & staff. A simple, rapid yet effective method of reducing dental anxiety would make dental treatment so much more acceptable for all concerned.
AIMS & OBJECTIVES
The aim of this study was to determine the effects of EFT on anxious dental patients immediately prior to dental treatment.
The objective was to demonstrate that EFT would be an effective & practical way of reducing anxiety in dental patients.
Brain Scan Changes During 4 Weeks of Treatment for Generalized Anxiety Disorder
By Joaquin Andrade, MD and David Feinstein, PhD
The research, which was initiated in the late 1980s and included various studies over a 14-year period, was published in 2004 in an appendix to David Feinstein’s Energy Psychology Interactive: Rapid Interventions for Lasting Change (Ashland, OR: Innersource).
In preliminary clinical trials involving more than 29,000 patients from 11 allied treatment centers in South America during a 14-year period, a variety of randomized, double-blind pilot studies were conducted. In one of these, approximately 5,000 patients diagnosed at intake with an anxiety disorder were randomly assigned to an experimental group (tapping) or a control group (Cognitive Behavior Therapy/medication) using standard randomization tables and, later, computerized software. Ratings were given by independent clinicians who interviewed each patient at the close of therapy, at 1 month, at 3 months, at 6 months, and at 12 months. The raters made a determination of complete remission of symptoms, partial remission of symptoms, or no clinical response. The raters did not know if the patient received CBT/medication or tapping. They knew only the initial diagnosis, the symptoms, and the severity, as judged by the intake staff. At the close of therapy:
63% of the control group were judged as having improved.
90% of the experimental group were judged as having improved.
51% of the control group were judged as being symptom free.
76% of the experimental group were judged as symptom free.
At one-year follow-up, the patients receiving tapping treatments were less prone to relapse or partial relapse than those receiving CBT/medication.
Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), for Reducing Specific Phobias of Small Animals
Wells, S., Polglase, K., Andrews, H. B., Carrington, P. & Baker, A. H.
Journal of Clinical Psychology, (2003), 59(9), 943-966.
Abstract: This study explored whether a meridian-based procedure, Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), can reduce specific phobias of small animals under laboratory-controlled conditions. Randomly assigned participants were treated individually for 30 minutes with EFT (n = 18) or a comparison condition, Diaphragmatic Breathing (DB) (n = 17). ANOVAS revealed that EFT produced significantly greater improvement than did DB behaviorally and on three self-report measures, but not on pulse rate. The greater improvement for EFT was maintained, and possibly enhanced, at 6 – 9 months follow-up on the behavioral measure. These findings suggest that a single treatment session using EFT to reduce specific phobias can produce valid behavioral and subjective effects.
New Study Supports EFT for Food Cravings
Scientific proof can often come after we’ve experienced something to be true in our everyday lives. In such instances, it validates what we already know and allows us to talk about it now with scientific backing.
This is what is happening with a new study conducted by Dr. Peta Stapleton and a team of researchers at the School of Medicine in Griffith University, Queensland, Australia. It has confirmed what we’ve been observing for years and what you know as a user of meridian tapping, about how this method can be used to sharply reduce food cravings.
These researchers studied ninety-six overweight or obese adults, one half of whom were taught EFT right away, while the other half had to wait for four weeks while just doing whatever they ordinarily did to control food cravings.
At the end of this time, the “waitlist” group was given training in EFT too, but they had already been thoroughly studied by that time. The “wait list” group was the control (comparison) group.
What Were These Researchers Looking For?
Before the research began, they gave the subjects a series of tests to determine the intensity of their food cravings and measure how strong an influence food exerted over them (that is, its “pull” value). The researchers also investigated the degree of restraint these people showed when faced with tempting food, and the number of psychological symptoms of stress they were exhibiting in their lives generally. Finally, everyone in the study was initially measured to determine their BMI (Body Mass Index), an indication of the way the body stores and distributes fat — the lower the BMI, the healthier the fat metabolism of the individual.
After that, and this makes this study particularly interesting, these same subjects were studied again at the end of 12 months.
What Had Happened?
When retested at the end of four weeks, those who had learned EFT showed significantly lowered food cravings compared to the wait list controls who had not learned the method. At that time, the EFT’ers also had improved significantly in the degree to which they could exercise restraint when confronted by tempting foods, and the degree to which food could exert a pulling power over them.
What is particularly interesting, however, was that two of the measures, the intensity of food cravings and the pull of the food on them, remained significantly improved at the end of one year in those who had been practicing EFT, demonstrating the holding power of this technique. Also, the Body Mass Index (BMI) the measure of the body’s storage of fat, was significantly reduced in those practicing EFT at the end of one year, a highly desirable outcome.
The results of this study show that EFT can have an immediate effect on reducing food cravings and also result in maintenance of these reduced cravings over a much longer period of time. In addition it shows that EFT impacts favourably on The Body Mass Index, changing it in the desired direction. The researchers suggest that EFT may contribute to the ability of weight loss/dieting programs to assist people to achieve reduced food cravings and therefore lose weight .
*This study was conducted by Stapleton, Sheldon, Porter & Whitty, 2009-2010 (personal communication from the authors). It was funded by a grant from the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology (ACEP). The journal article reporting this study is now under review for publication by a professional journal.
Dr. Patricia Carrington is an EFT Master and innovator in the field of energy psychology. She shares EFT/Tapping individually with clients, has authored numerous self-help programs and is the creator of a popular teleclass series called Frontiers of Meridian Tapping
More research, statistical analysis and reports on Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) available from ACEP (Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology)
Published Research Studies and Review Articles in the field of Energy Psychology
This section contains a listing of published research references with abstracts in the field of Energy Psychology, in reverse chronological order. Revised January 2012. Connolly, S.M., & Sakai, C.E. (2012, in press).
Brief trauma symptom intervention with Rwandan genocide survivors using Thought Field Therapy. International Journal of Emergency Mental Health.
This randomized waitlist control study examined the efficacy of Thought Field Therapy (TFT) in reducing Posttraumatic Stress Disorder symptoms in survivors of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Participants included 145 adult genocide survivors randomly assigned to an immediate TFT treatment group or a waitlist control group. Group differences adjusted for pre-test scores and repeated measures anovas were statistically significant at p < .001 for 9 of 10 TSI trauma subscales and for both severity and frequency on the MPSS, with moderate to large effect sizes. Reduced trauma symptoms for the group receiving TFT were found for all scales. Reductions in trauma symptoms were sustained at a 2-year follow-up assessment. Limitations, clinical implications, and future research are discussed.
Church, D., Yount, G. & Brooks, A. (2011). The Effect of Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) on Stress Biochemistry: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, in press.
Cortisol is a physiological marker for stress. Elevated cortisol levels are associated with accelerated aging, many organic diseases, and psychological conditions such as depression and anxiety.
This study examined the changes in cortisol levels and psychological symptoms of 83 non-clinical subjects receiving a single hour long intervention. Subjects were randomly assigned to either an EFT group, a psychotherapy group receiving a supportive interview (SI), or a no treatment (NT) group. Salivary cortisol assays were performed immediately before, and thirty minutes after the intervention. Psychological conditions were assessed using the SA-45.
The EFT group showed clinically and statistically significant improvements in anxiety (-58.34%, p < .05), depression (-49.33%, p < .002), the overall severity of symptoms, (-50.5%, p < .001), and symptom breadth across conditions (-41.93%, p < .001). There were no significant changes in cortisol levels between SI (-14.25%, SE 2.61) and NT (-14.44%, SE 2.67); however cortisol in the EFT group dropped significantly (-24.39%, SE 2.62) compared to SI and NT (p < .01). The reduced cortisol levels in the EFT group correlated with decreased severity in psychological symptoms as measured by the SA-45. These results suggest that salivary cortisol tests may be useful not only for assessing stress physiology, but also as an objective indicator of the impact of mental health treatments in reducing psychological symptoms. In the current study, EFT was shown to significantly improve both cortisol-related stress levels and self-reported psychological symptoms after a single treatment session.
Fitch, John. (2011). The Efficacy of Primordial Energy Activation and Transcendence (PEAT) for Public Speaking Anxiety. Energy Psychology: Theory, Research & Treatment, 3(2).
Background: Primordial Energy Activation and Transcendence (PEAT) is one of the newer energy psychology protocols. The purpose of this study was to test the effectiveness of a PEAT protocol on individuals experiencing communication anxiety and compare results with existing protocols such as Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) and Thought Field Therapy (TFT).
Method: The current study (N = 82) examined the efficacy of the PEAT protocol in reducing communication anxiety by measuring anxiety using the Communication Anxiety Inventory Form State (CAI State) before and after a 20-min PEAT treatment for an experimental group and comparing the results with a control group that received no treatment. University students enrolled in a public speaking class volunteered for participation in the study.
Results: The PEAT process produced a statistically significant downward shift in CAI State scores, relative to the control group, with a medium effect size. A qualitative content analysis of participant interviews also identified themes of effectiveness of the Basic PEAT protocol in reducing public speaking anxiety. The strength of the results indicates a beneficial effect due to the PEAT treatment and that further investigation is warranted.
Hodge, Patricia. (2011). A Pilot Study of the Effects of Emotional Freedom Techniques in Psoriasis. Energy Psychology: Theory, Research & Treatment, 3(2).
The documented relationship between stress and psoriasis suggests that non-invasive means of stress reduction may improve quality of life in persons with psoriasis.
Objectives: The purpose of this study was to (a) educate persons with psoriasis in the use of the innovative, self-applied, non-invasive emotional healing intervention Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) and (b) test its effects on psoriasis symptoms.
Method: A time series, within-subjects, repeated measures design was used. Persons with psoriasis (n = 12) were taught EFT in a 6-hr workshop and instructed to use EFT daily. Symptoms were measured using the Skindex-29 questionnaire. Psychological conditions were assessed using the Symptom Assessment-45 (SA-45), which has 9 subscales, and two general scales for the severity (GSI) and breadth (PST) of psychological distress. Participants were assessed pre-intervention, post intervention, and at 1 and 3 month follow-ups.
Psychological symptom severity (GSI) improved post-workshop, demonstrating both clinical (raw score) and statistical significance (-56.43%, p=.043). Improvements (T score) (-50.67%, p=.002) were sustained at three 3-month follow-up (-50.54%, p=.001; -38.43%; p=.002). Symptom breadth (PST) also improved post-workshop clinically (-49.24%, p=.005), and that improvement was sustained over time (-46.93%, p=.019). Skindex-29 scores indicated improvements in emotional distress (-41.56%, p=.002), symptoms (-49.05%; p=.001), and functioning (-58.31%; p=.001) post-workshop, with changes over time to -80.56% (p=<.001), -74.95% (p=<.001), and -89.99% (p=.001) respectively, and at 3 months. Differences by gender were found in psychological symptom severity and skin-related symptom distress.
Conclusion: Participants experienced significant improvement in functioning and psychological, emotional, and physical symptoms.
Jones, Sharon; Thornton, Jennifer; Andrews, Henry. (2011). Efficacy of EFT in Reducing Public Speaking Anxiety: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Energy Psychology: Theory, Research, Treatment, 3(1).
Thirty six volunteers with Public Speaking Anxiety (PSA) were randomly allocated into a treatment group and wait-list control group. Subjective self-report measures were taken before, during, and after a forty-five minute treatment session with Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). Behavioural observations were recorded during a 4-minute speech immediately after treatment. Comparisons between groups revealed significant reductions in PSA on all self-report measures, but not in behavioural observations. Changes in scores taken before and after treatment for each participant revealed significant reduction in PSA on all subjective and behavioural measures.
A significant reduction in PSA as measured by Subjective Units of Discomfort was demonstrated within the first 15 minutes of treatment with EFT, with further significant reductions also demonstrated at 30 and 45 minutes. EFT was found to be a quick and effective treatment for PSA.
Karatzias, Power, McGoldrick, et al. (2011). A Controlled Comparison of the Effectiveness and Efficiency of Two Psychological Therapies for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing vs. Emotional Freedom Techniques. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disorders, 199, 372-78.
The present study reports on the first ever controlled comparison between eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) and emotional freedom techniques (EFT) for post-traumatic stress disorder. A total of 46 participants were randomized to either EMDR (n = 23) or EFT (n = 23). The participants were assessed at baseline and then reassessed after an 8-week waiting period. Two further blind assessments were conducted at post treatment and 3-months follow-up.
Overall, the results indicated that both interventions produced significant therapeutic gains at post treatment and follow-up in an equal number of sessions. Similar treatment effect sizes were observed in both treatment groups. Regarding clinical significant changes, a slightly higher proportion of patients in the EMDR group produced substantial clinical changes compared with the EFT group. Given the speculative nature of the theoretical basis of EFT, a dismantling study on the active ingredients of EFT should be subject to future research.
Palmer-Hoffman, Julie & Brooks, Audrey. (2011). Psychological Symptom Change after Group Application of Emotional Freedom Techniques. Energy Psychology: Theory, Research, & Treatment, 3(1), 57-72.
A study by J. E. Rowe (2005) examined the effects of Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) on psychological conditions such as depression and anxiety. The sample (N = 102) consisted of participants at a weekend workshop taught by Gary Craig, the originator of EFT. Rowe found significant improvements in psychological symptoms from pre- to post-workshop assessments, with significant participant gains maintained on follow-up.
The current study examined whether the improvements were attributable to Gary Craig alone or whether similar effects are noted when EFT is delivered by others. This study examined samples of participants at 4 different conferences, in which EFT was taught by others (N = 102). In all 4 conferences, there were significant improvements in the severity and breadth of symptoms pre- and post-workshop (p < .001), and following 3 of the 4 conferences there were significant long-term gains (p < .001). The results indicate that EFT may be effective at reducing psychological symptoms when delivered by individuals other than the method’s founder and that EFT may reliably improve long-term mental health when delivered in brief group treatments.
Salas, Martha, Brooks, Audrey, & Rowe, Jack. (2011). The Immediate Effect of a Brief Energy Psychology Intervention (Emotional Freedom Techniques) on Specific Phobias: A Pilot Study. Explore, 2011: 7: 155-161.
This study examined whether Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), a brief exposure therapy that combines cognitive and somatic elements, had an immediate effect on the reduction of anxiety and behaviour associated with specific phobias.
The present study utilized a cross-over design with participants (N=22) randomly assigned to either diaphragmatic breathing or EFT as the first treatment. Study measures included a behavioural approach test, Subjective Units of Distress Scale, and Beck Anxiety Inventory. EFT significantly reduced phobia-related anxiety and ability to approach the feared stimulus whether presented as an initial treatment or following diaphragmatic breathing. When presented as the initial treatment, the effects of EFT remained through the presentation of the comparison intervention. Further study of EFT for specific phobias is warranted.
Stein, Phyllis, & Brooks, Audrey. Efficacy of EFT Provided by Coaches vs. Licensed Therapists in Veterans with PTSD. (2011). Energy Psychology: Theory, Research, and Treatment, 3(1).
Background: EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is a validated method for treating posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), available to both lay persons and to licensed mental health practitioners (LMP). It is unknown whether results would be significantly different when EFT is administered by licensed practitioners compared to trained lay coaches.
Methods: N=149 veterans with PTSD were approached and 59 were eligible and consented to the study. They were randomized to an active treatment (EFT N=30) and wait list (WL N=29) control group and received treatment from a LMP (N=26) or a coach (N=33). PTSD was assessed using the PCL-M (PTSD Checklist-Military), and psychological symptoms using the SA-45 (Symptom Assessment-45).
All study participants met diagnostic criteria for PTSD on the PCL-M. Participants received 6 sessions of EFT over the course of a month. Questionnaires were repeated after 3 and 6 EFT sessions, and at 3 and 6 months. Wait list was assessed at intake and one month before beginning EFT sessions.
Results: Results are based on post-intervention data from the combined EFT and WL groups. Significant declines in the percent meeting PTSD diagnostic criteria were seen after 3 sessions of EFT with 47% of coach and 30% of LMP participants still meeting PTSD diagnostic criteria. Improvements continued to be seen after 6 sessions (17% coach, 10% LMP) and were sustained at 3 months (17% coach, 11% LMP). Although the percent meeting clinical PTSD criteria increased slightly at 6 months (24% coach, 17% LMP), the overwhelming majority of vets with PTSD treated with EFT remained free of clinically-defined PTSD. The trend for better outcomes for LMP did not reach statistical significance.
Conclusion: Six sessions of EFT, whether administered by a coach or an LMP is efficacious in treating PTSD among veterans suggesting that EFT provided by lay coaches would be an effective strategy to address PTSD in this population.
Temple, Graham & Mollon, Phil. (2011). Reducing Anxiety in Dental Patients using EFT: A Pilot Study. Energy Psychology: Theory, Research & Treatment, 3(2).
Adult patients awaiting dental treatment were screened for self-reported anxiety using an 11-point Likert scale. Those in the higher half of the range (n = 30) received a 10-min intervention consisting of a 4-min Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) explanation and 6-min treatment. All patients reported a decrease in subjective anxiety, with a mean pre-treatment score of 8.03 and a post treatment score of 3.03. Paired t tests revealed a statistically significant decrease (p < .001).
These results are consistent with other published reports of EFTs efficacy for anxiety. They suggest that even a very brief EFT intervention can reduce anxiety and that an additional controlled trial with both observer- and participant-rated measures should be undertaken.
Zhang, Ying; Feng, Bin; Xie, Jian-ping; Xu, Fang-zhong; and Chen, Jiong. Clinical Study on Treatment of the Earthquake-caused Post-traumatic Stress Disorder by Cognitive-behavior Therapy and Acupoint Stimulation. Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, March 2011; 31(1): 60-63.
Objective: To study the curative effect of acupoint stimulation on the earthquake-caused post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Methods: The 91 PTSD patients in Wenchuan hit by a strong earthquake were randomly divided into a control group of 24 cases treated by the cognitive-behavior therapy, and a treatment group of 67 cases treated by both cognitive-behavior therapy and acupoint stimulation. The scores were evaluated according to Chinese version of the incident effect scale revised (IES-R) and the self-compiled questionnaire for the major post-traumatic psychological condition, and the curative effect was compared between the two groups.
Results: The total scores of IES-R, the scores of all factors and the total scores of the questionnaire in the two groups after treatment were much lower than those before treatment (P<0.01). The comparison of reduction in the factor scores between the two groups showed that the curative effect in the treatment group was better that of in the control group.
Conclusion: The acupoint stimulation is effective for the PTSD patients, with better results than that of cognitive-behaviour therapy used alone. HOME