[Home]    PSY 101    [Psychology Images]   Treatment of Psychological D/Os I: General Issues & Verbal (Insight) Therapies

The Western notion of "Psychotherapy" began at the turn of the 20th century with Sigmund Freud.

To this day, we often think of the treatment of psychological disorders as an extension of Freud's work. But, in actuality, there are many alternative ways of treatment besides the psychoanalyst's couch and talking about dreams!

            Many would say that the 1990s brought a new approach to the treatment of psychological disorders in the experience of many Americans: the widespread use of medications (drugs) which require very little professional time (which is costly) and can be easily administered.          

 Treatment: General Issues


There are at least 400 recognized forms of "therapy" for the treatment of mental disorders. These represent one or more of the following general modalities of treatment



Verbal (Insight) Therapies

Psychoanalysis -- Developed by Sigmund Freud and his followers from 1900 to the present

Goal: Uncover the unconscious origins of psychological (and many physical) disorders -- the conflicts, motives, memories, and defenses of which the patient is unaware -- by techniques such as free association, transference, and dream analysis.


Probing the Unconsicous

  • Free Association
  • Dream Analysis: An examination of the
    • manifest or recalled content of a dream
    • hidden (latent) and symbolic meaning of the dream




Classical Psychoanalysis

Contemporary Psychodynamic Therapy


Client Centered Therapy - Developed by Carl Rogers in the late 1940s and 1950s

Provide the client with a supportive emotional environment in which clients can grow and develop in healthy, individual directions.

Therapist provides the client with three essential emotional supports:


Cognitive Therapy - Developed by several therapists including Aaron Beck (on right) in the 1960s and 1970s.

-help the client identify, challenge, and change maladaptive beliefs and negative thinking.

The therapist works with the client



This page was originally posted on 12/01/03 and last updated on 12/06/06