Types of Therapy
The following main therapeutic approaches are offered:
- EMDR (Eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing therapy)
- CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy)
- Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
- Clinical Hypnosis
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) encompasses a range of styles and techniques which essentially focus on how thoughts can influence behaviour and mood. It has been particularly effective in addressing depression and anxiety.
Mindfulness based CBT is a more recent development and part of the ‘third wave’ of CBT which also includes Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT).
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is an effective treatment for PTSD developed by the American Clinical Psychologist Francine Shapiro. It is now used more widely to treat a broad spectrum of complaints including phobias.
We use Clinical Hypnosis as an adjunct to the other therapies rather than a stand-alone treatment. For example, a client who is prone to overwhelming bouts of anxiety or phobic reactions would be taught to use self-hypnosis to control the anxiety, alongside cognitive-behavioural or a more dynamic approach.
Psychodynamic or Psychoanalytic therapy tends to focus more on the conflicts that produce psychological problems and symptoms. Sessions tend to be less structured than in CBT and attention is given to ‘unconscious’ material such as dreams. Therapy also tends to be more open-ended and potentially of longer duration, which can have cost implications.
Interpersonal Therapy developed out of psychoanalysis with greater emphasis on relationship variables.
The important point to remember is that for psychotherapy to be effective, it should be adapted to the individual and their circumstances, and that you are able to feel comfortable with your therapist.
Your first appointment
The first appointment is an opportunity for you to discuss your difficulties as well as ask any questions you may have. If you would prefer someone to accompany you to the appointment that’s also fine.
The aim of the initial session is for the psychologist to arrive at an understanding of your difficulties and to explore relevant background factors. Occasionally the assessment may include some form of psychological testing to get a further picture of your difficulties.
During this meeting you will discuss whether further appointments may be helpful to you and what to expect from the sessions.