What Type Of Therapy Is Best For You?
Going to therapy is a big step, but it can be a valuable experience that helps to make life easier for you. One of the things that you’ll need to decide when going to therapy is what type of therapy will work best for you.
There are many different types of therapy, including alternative or complementary therapies. However, not every kind of therapy will work for everyone or be beneficial for every mental health condition or individual’s situation.
Let’s look at the main types of therapy and when they are generally helpful:
Types of therapy
Lots of different types of therapy exist, but commonly used forms include:
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
CBT is one of the most common types of therapy. It involves identifying patterns and behaviours in your life that are unhealthy or related to a mental health problem. Once these have been identified, you can work with your therapist to set goals to overcome them and tasks or activities that will help you get there.
CBT is suitable for a wide range of mental health conditions, including anxiety, depression, PTSD and eating disorders. However, not everyone with these conditions will respond positively to it.
Counselling is a popular therapy method involving speaking to a counsellor over one or several sessions. Counselling takes place in confidence, enabling you to talk freely and work through solutions to the difficulties you are experiencing.
Those experiencing depression or adverse life events, such as bereavement, will likely benefit from counselling.
EMDR (eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing)
EMDR is a type of therapy in which negative experiences that cause issues like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are reframed and reprocessed to be less triggering and impactful.
EMDR is mostly used for those with PTSD. It can be a demanding process as it involves bringing up past experiences, so taking care of yourself is very important during EMDR therapy.
BA (Behavioural Activation)
Behavioural activation is a therapy used most often to treat mild to moderate depression. When we are depressed, we struggle to complete tasks that bring us joy.
BA encourages us to understand this vicious cycle – in which depression causes inactivity, which leads to worsening depression – and actively complete small tasks. By breaking out of inactivity, you may become more able to complete larger tasks and find positivity in your activity.
Typically used for those with phobias or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), exposure therapy involves periods of exposure to the source of your anxiety, with the goal of lessening it over time.
There are many other types of therapy, including self-help, guided self-help, mindfulness, interpersonal and animal therapy
You can access therapy in many ways, depending on the type of therapy you wish to access and your existing mental health conditions. Other factors affecting access to certain types of therapy include finances, location and travel capabilities.
Contact the NHS
Your GP or healthcare provider should be able to refer you to a therapy service if you ask. They can also recommend types of therapy that may be useful to you.
Treatment of the NHS is usually free to access and approved by healthcare providers, although waiting times can be lengthy.
Private Health Care
Some people choose to access therapy privately, either because they can’t get the kind of therapy they need in another way or because they need it quickly.
If you choose to go private, you can use registers like BACP to find a registered therapist that is right for you. Some practitioners offer concessionary rates and are able to fit around your schedule.
Mental Health Charities
Lots of charities and organisations now exist to support those seeking therapy who aren’t able to access it on the NHS or pay for private sessions. Each area in the UK has its own regional charities, as well as national ones like Mind. Different mental health conditions will also have their own organisations, where staff are experts in that particular issue.
Managing your mental health can be challenging, and the Fircroft Trust is here to help. Please get in touch with us for more guidance or support on accessing different therapies.
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