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Psychotherapy: Six reasons why it is worth it

Psychotherapy: Six reasons why it is worth it
Psychotherapy: Six reasons why it is worth it

Psychotherapy is effective in treating illnesses such as depression, anxiety disorders or psychosomatic problems. But the waiting times for a therapy place in Germany are long. Why it is still worth it.

Shame, long waiting times and not knowing where to find help – there are many reasons why mentally ill people do not seek help despite their suffering. Mental illnesses can be very painful for those affected. In Germany, people with statutory insurance have to wait an average of more than four months to start psychotherapy, according to the Federal Chamber of Psychotherapists. The situation can be discouraging and calling dozens of psychotherapists can be exhausting. But it’s worth persevering. Six reasons that speak in favor of psychotherapy:

Psychotherapy is not a cliché

Psychotherapists and psychiatrists are often disparagingly referred to as shrinks. Some people don’t want to sit on the couch and pour out their inner life in front of an aloof middle-aged man while he diligently takes notes. This cliché comes from Sigmund Freud’s idea of ​​psychoanalysis. But all forms of therapy that are paid for by health insurance companies today have of course developed further since then. How you sit in therapy depends on the type of therapy. In behavioral therapy and psychotherapy based on depth psychology, you sit face to face with the therapist in a trusting environment. Regardless of the type of therapy, scientifically recognized procedures, methods and techniques are used in psychotherapy to help people with mental illnesses. Read here which type of therapy is right for you and how you can recognize a good therapist.

Psychotherapy works

Just as a cast ensures that the bones of a broken leg grow back together properly, psychotherapy has been proven to help people to break harmful behavioral patterns. Studies show that around 70 percent of people who undergo psychotherapy benefit from it. A representative survey conducted by the Techniker Krankenkasse in 2011 shows that psychotherapy continues to have an effect even one year after treatment, or that the patient’s condition even improves further. From 2005 to 2009, almost 400 psychotherapists and 1,708 patients in Westphalia-Lippe, Hesse and southern Baden took part in the “Quality Monitoring in Psychotherapy” model project financed by the Techniker Krankenkasse (TK). The success of therapy depends largely on two factors: a trusting relationship between therapist and patient, and the willingness to undergo therapy and cooperate. In other words, only those who are willing to attend sessions regularly and also want to invest time in reflection or tasks will benefit from therapy.

Therapy is a protected space

In therapy, all thoughts, feelings and topics that the patient wants to address can be addressed. And this happens in a protected space. Psychotherapists are bound by confidentiality. This means that they are not allowed to tell anyone what was said in therapy. In addition, psychotherapists and psychiatrists do not judge the feelings or thoughts that patients share with them. They encourage reflection, uncover behavioral patterns and offer help in getting rid of harmful behaviors, for example.

Therapy opens up new perspectives

It can be beneficial to talk to friends about problems or ask them for relationship tips. However, they cannot give us free advice; they have a relationship with us through friendship. They will confirm our feelings because they feel the same way as us. In therapy, on the other hand, we are sitting opposite someone who is not involved in our life. Therapists also address our part in a conflict and point out behavioral patterns. With targeted questions or comments, therapy sessions help us to see what lies behind a conflict and what our own part in it is.

Therapy helps you write your own story

Many people find it difficult to say no. Those who pay a lot of attention to what other people want and need tend to lose their sense of self, says psychotherapist Franca Cerutti. This means, for example, that they look for an appeal, an instruction in every statement made by the other person. According to the model of communication psychologist Friedemann Schulz von Thun’s communication quadrant, the appeal ear hears best. The sender, the speaker, says a sentence and thereby conveys factual information, reveals something about themselves, conveys clues about their relationship status and formulates an appeal. Those who react a lot to what is said, feelings and needs of other people and the environment do not write their own story, but are dependent on reacting to what is happening in their environment. Therapy can help to recognize this. Instead of just reacting to the environment, what you learn in therapy enables you to set boundaries and sense your own needs, for example.

Therapy helps us process experiences

Therapy can help to process feelings, losses or experiences. For example, the end of a romantic relationship: In therapy, patients are given methods and techniques to stop the endless pondering about “why” a breakup happened. Sometimes rituals can also help to get over a relationship that ended with a total break in contact, explained psychologist Uta Fröhlich to the star.

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Source: Stern

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