The term psychotherapy is derived from Ancient Greek psyche (meaning breath; spirit; soul) and therapeia ( meaning healing; medical treatment).
Psychotherapy is also known as talking therapy, because it uses talking, rather than medication. It is composed of a number of psychological methods used to help individuals to improve their well-being and mental health , to resolve or mitigate troublesome behaviors, beliefs, compulsions, thoughts, or emotions, and to improve relationships and social skills.
Psychotherapy is a process whereby psychological problems are treated through communication and relationship factors between an individual and a trained mental health professional.
Psychotherapy deals with a wide range of difficulties which include coping with daily life; the impact of trauma, medical illness, bereavement and loss, and specific mental disorders. There are several different types of psychotherapy and some types may work better with specific individuals’ problems or issues. In severe cases, psychotherapy can be part of a holistic approach and may be used in combination with medication or other healing therapies.
Although most psychotherapies are based on the communication between the psychotherapist and their client, there is much more than talking about your problems.
Psychotherapy is a professional relationship between a psychotherapist and a client that is based on therapeutic principles, structure and technique. It differs from other relationships in several ways.
The relationship between a psychotherapist and a client is strictly professional. In other words, the relationship exists only and solely for the purpose of helping the patient. The psychotherapist is there for the patient and expects nothing in return but payment for the time.
Confidentiality, trust and mutual respect are the building blocks of a professional psycho-therapeutic relationship.
Finding a psychotherapist with whom an individual can work well is paramount for the therapeutic process.
Contemporary psychotherapy is time-limited, focused, and usually occurs once a week for 45-50 minutes per session.
Psychotherapy may be conducted in an individual, family, couple, or group setting. There are also psychotherapists specialised in working with children and adolescents.
Psychotherapy can be short-term (a few sessions), dealing with immediate issues, or long-term (months or years), dealing with longstanding and complex issues. The goals of treatment and arrangements for how often and how long to meet are planned jointly by the psychotherapist and their client.