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Different Types of Psychological Therapy

When you hear the word ‘therapy’, you might think of doctors and receiving treatment in sessions. However, there are various kinds of therapy-too many to fit in one article-including unconventional ones that some people consider just as effective. Here are different types of psychological therapy for you to get familiar with:

Clinical

  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – a short-term, goal-oriented psychotherapy treatment which aims to change patterns of thinking or behavior.
  • Client/Person-Centered Therapy (PCT, CCT, or Rogerian Therapy) – a counseling approach that requires a client’s active role in his or her treatment with the therapist being non-directive.
  • Family Therapy – a branch of psychotherapy that works with families and couples in intimate relationships to nurture change and development.
  • Existential Therapy – a unique form of therapy which focuses on the human condition, highlights our capacities, and encourages us to take responsibility for our successes.
  • Psychoanalytic/Psychodynamic Therapy – in-depth talk therapy that aims to reveal unconscious or deeply buried thoughts and feelings so repressed experiences and emotions, often from childhood, can be brought to the surface and examined.
  • Emotion-Focused Therapy – a therapy based on the premise that emotions guide one’s individual choice and decision making.
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) – encourages people to embrace their thoughts and feelings rather than fighting or feeling guilty for them.
  • Reality Therapy – present-centered approach that focuses on problem-solving and making better choices in order to achieve specific goals.
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy – an evidence-based psychotherapy that began with efforts to treat borderline personality disorder, can be useful in treating mood disorders, suicidal ideation, and change in behavioral patterns such as self-harm, and substance abuse.
  • Gestalt Therapy – helps clients focus on the present and understand what’s really happening in their lives right now, rather than what they may perceive to be happening based on past experience.
  • Jungian Therapy – an analytical form of talk therapy designed to bring together the conscious and unconscious parts of the mind to help a person feel balanced and whole.
  • Adlerian Therapy – an approach in which a therapist works with a client to identify obstacles and create effective strategies for working towards their goals

Alternative

  • Meditation – a practice where an individual uses a technique such as mindfulness or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity, to train attention and awareness and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.
  • Emotion Code – aims to release trapped emotions to make conditions right for the body to heal physically, and make emotional difficulties disappear or become much easier to deal with.
  • Emotional Freedom Technique – treatment for physical pain and emotional distress that’s also referred to as tapping or psychological acupressure.
  • Hypnotherapy – uses hypnosis to create a state of focused attention and increased suggestibility during which positive suggestions and guided imagery are used to help individuals deal with a variety of concerns and issues.
  • Aromatherapy – a holistic healing treatment that uses natural plant extracts to promote health and well-being.
  • Massage Therapy – involves manipulation of the soft tissues of the body to help relieve body stress or pain, manage a health condition, or enhance wellness.
  • Yoga – a widely practiced Hindu spiritual and ascetic discipline for health and relaxation which includes breath control, simple meditation, and the adoption of specific bodily postures.
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation – a method of deep muscle relaxation based on the premise that muscle tension is the body’s psychological response to anxiety-provoking thoughts, and that muscle relaxation blocks anxiety.
  • Movement Therapy – uses movement to help a person deal with an illness (physical or mental), a disability, or life challenges that keep them from functioning fully.
  • Acupuncture – involves stimulating certain points on the body, most often with a needle penetrating the skin, to alleviate pain or to help treat various health conditions.
  • Biofeedback – a mind-body technique in which visual or auditory feedback are used to gain control over involuntary bodily functions such as heart rate, muscle tension, blood flow, pain perception, and blood pressure.
  • Music Therapy – uses music to improve and maintain the physical, psychological, and social well-being of individuals (e.g. listening to music, singing, and playing a musical instrument).

With all the existing types of therapy today, you are free to find the right one for you. As long as it’s safe and moreover, recommended by people you trust, you can see for yourself if it works for your condition. Although it’s best to seek professional help, there are also other forms of treatment to try–just always make sure that you learn enough about them before doing so.

Can you relate? Share your thoughts below about the types of therapy. We’d love to hear them!

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Written by Hannah Grace

A B.S. Psychology graduate who fights both real and imaginary shadows every day with music and words.

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