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Types of Therapy

Explore different types of therapy


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that is a short-term approach to mental health treatment developed in the 1960s. It holds similarities to behavioral therapy but also addresses unhealthy thought patterns as well as problematic thoughts.


Its main goals are to teach people that certain feelings and beliefs can lead to feelings of distress that might contribute to mental health issues.

What does cognitive refer to?

Related to conscious intellectual activity


  • Bipolar Disorder

  • OCD

  • Phobias

  • PTSD

  • Psychosis

  • Schizophrenia

  • Sleep Issues

  • Alcohol Abuse


CBT is different from other types of therapy because of the emphasis it places on the theory that the way we perceive an issue causes hard to manage emotions.


This therapy teaches people to stop thinking of difficult situations as a reflection of their self-worth, to understand that it does not have to do with their value. CBT therapists help the patients see a definite interaction between thoughts, behaviors, and emotions.


CBT focuses more on present behaviors rather than past situations compared to therapies such as psychotherapy.


  • It is more valuable to focus on the 'here and now,' ask yourself what you can improve in the future

  • Goals you set should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-limited)

  • Be aware of your underlying assumptions and learn to see other perspectives

  • It's important to be mindful and distinguish thoughts from facts


Dialectical Behavioral Therapy


Dialectal Behavioral Therapy (DBT) was developed by a woman named Dr. Marsha Linehan to address her concerns with CBT in treating patients with BPD - it's branched off from CBT.


Its main goals are to teach people to live mindfully, regulate emotions, find healthy coping methods, and foster growth in their interpersonal relationships. Although originally developed to treat BPD, it has been adapted to also assist in treating patients with other conditions, such as PTSD.

What does dialectal mean?

Two opposing things being true at once.


  • BPD

  • PTSD

  • Self-harm addictions

  • Suicidal Behavior

  • Substance abuse disorders

  • Eating disorders

  • Depression

  • Anxiety


DBT was developed to help people with extreme and unstable emotions / harmful behaviors learn to regulate their emotions.


It is a modified version of CBT that uses traditional techniques and employs other strategies such as radical acceptance and mindfulness.


DBT has a few main differences in treatment, including the consistent dialectal philosophy, mindfulness/acceptance interventions, and focusing emotions during treatment.


There are four modules to DBT, including Mindfulness, Interpersonal Effectiveness, Distress Tolerance, and Emotion Regulation. Each module is designed to develop skills gradually built through group and individual therapy.


Mindfulness: This module is about practicing a non-judgemental stance focused awareness on the present. It allows you to attend to your thoughts, feeling, and behaviors without being overwhelmed by your feelings.


Interpersonal Effectiveness: This module is about attending to relationships, keeping boundaries, balance "wants" and "shoulds," and builds a sense of mastery and self-respect.


Distress Tolerance: This module helps patients manage distress healthily; when they feel overwhelmed, this module offers healthy alternatives rather than acting on urges.


Emotional Regulation: This module helps teach patients to cope more effectively with situations they might be in. The skills they learn are ones of dealing with change and learning acceptance.


  • All things are interconnected


  • Change is constant and inevitable


  • Always look for the kernel of truth in what others are saying


  • Understand that more than one thing can be true at once


  • When making decisions, try to make sure that you are making decisions with both logic and emotions, not wholly one or the other

Humanisitic Therapy

Humanistic Therapy


An approach that looks at how your worldview affects your choices, especially those that cause distress. This form of therapy is designed based on the belief that you're the best person to understand your experiences and needs. Humanistic therapists simply listen and offer guidance and support without interpreting your feelings for you.


  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Panic Disorders

  • Personality Disorders

  • Schizophrenia

  • Addiction

  • Schizophrenia

  • Those with low self-esteem

  • Interpersonal Issues


  • Unconditional positive regard

  • Empathetic understanding

  • Genuineness, honesty, and transparency

Psychodynamic Therapy

Psychodynamic Therapy


Psychodynamic therapy is developed from psychoanalysis, which is a long-term approach to mental health treatment. The term psychotherapy was coined in the late 19th century.


Within psychoanalysis, you can expect to talk about anything on your mind and to uncover patterns in thoughts and behavior that might add to your distress. It's also common to talk about your childhood, past, and dreams.


It focuses on increasing your awareness of unconscious thoughts and behaviors, developing new insights into your motivations, and resolving conflicts.


  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Panic and Stress Disorders


Psychodynamic therapy is a longer-term approach to mental health treatment than other therapies, such as CBT. But different types of therapy, such as CBT, are developed from psychotherapy.


Traditional psychoanalysis, from which psychotherapy comes, is a form of treatment that can go on for years.


Patients work with their therapists to examine the connection between the unconscious mind and actions. This involves exploring your emotions, relationships, and thought patterns.


  • It is valuable to recognize recurring patterns that can help people see how they avoid distress or develop defense mechanisms to cope

  • Behavior is influenced by unconscious thought

  • Once vulnerable or painful feelings are processed, defense mechanisms reduce or resolve

Alternative Forms of Therapy

Alternative Forms of Therapy 

  • Dietary Supplements

  • Meditation

  • Chiropractic

  • Aromatherapy

  • Massage Therapy

  • Reiki

  • Music Therapy

  • Art Therapy

  • Yoga

  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation

  • Spirituality, Religion, and Prayer

  • Movement Therapy

  • Acupuncture

  • Biofeedback

  • Hypnosis

Therapy is just like medications; different combinations may work for different people. It may take some research and trial and error. 

Most often, a combination of therapy coupled with alternative therapies tends to be effective for people struggling.

PsychologyToday is a great resource for looking for therapists!

Please dial the suicide prevention hotline at 988 if you are in need of immedate assistance.

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