By : Michael Kasdaglis, Dcsw

Types of Psychotherapy - Treatment Modalities

Psychotherapeutic techniques; Art, or Science ?


Psychotherapeutic techniques abound with diversity and innovation. Though they all focus on the amelioration of mental health conditions and consequent distress, their relevance to etiology, cause if you will, is highly dependent on theoretical postulates, rather than on an axiomatic basis.

One might even say that therapy is more of an art or a practice of ‘convenience’ rather than an empirical science.

What is especially significant in the 21st century, is that “Treatment Techniques” are primarily dependent on the following:

It is imperative that those seeking psychotherapy exercise due diligence while bearing in mind that errors in ‘diagnoses, or the utilization of inept, or inappropriate techniques, can do more harm than good.

Finally, be aware that a single word or utterance by a poorly trained psychotherapist can result in the exacerbation of a condition or its symptoms.

Conditions that are poorly treated result in becoming intractable and/or chronic.

Psychotherapy - Definition

Generally speaking, Psychotherapy is a process through which individuals in states of distress, or different forms of dysfunction, attempt to mitigate, or ameliorate symptoms, or conditions thought to be related to their discomfort, anguish, or failure to adapt and relate to others.

Having said that, one may consider that there may be individuals who are "Ego-Syntonic"; that is, their signs and symptoms are not recognized by them, nor do they think they have any problems, e.g., some alcoholics, those suffering from serious thought disorders, narcissists, etc.

Though these individuals may cause adversity, and even harm to others, they are oblivious of their actions and contributions.

So, to state that Psychotherapy addresses individual suffering, may not be inclusive.

We need to expand our definition of what "Psychotherapy is" to include the objective of "assisting individuals in recognizing and mitigating characterological defects, or deficits, that may cause, or contribute adversely to the wellbeing of others.

We need to also consider that there are individuals who though capable of certain levels of success and achievement, are underperforming, and/or underachieving. due to characterological quirks that adversely impact their self-esteem, confidence, and self-regard.

Finally, we may be remiss in not addressing Dysfunctions in family, and or group units in need of exploring underlying causes and reasons that adversely impact the quality of their relationships.

"Psychoanalysis", unlike its sister "Psychotherapy", is a very long and tedious process through which the primary objective is a complete restructuring of an individual's character, and personality.

Psychotherapy Delivery and Service Types

Copyright © 1987 Michael Kasdaglis, Abmhd. All rights reserved!