We don't believe in a 'one size fits all' approach to treatment, so we provide a range of treatment types tailored to patients' needs. The most common of these are:
Psychotherapy or counselling
The patient is seen on their own. Appointments are usually offered on a weekly basis, or occasionally less frequently. When the patient is a child, we would normally work with the family too. This work usually takes place at the same time and in the same room, as we find that this consistently helps people get the most out of their treatment. We also try to allow the patient to take the lead in sessions, which can sometimes lead to silences, which may feel uncomfortable.
Also known as systemic therapy, family therapy works with families to bring about change. It sees family and other relationships as an important factor in psychological health (all family members will usually be influenced by the problem, and will also be able to influence it), so involving families in solutions is often beneficial. Family members, in different combinations, often take part directly in the therapy session. Understanding everyone’s view is important, and talking together can help to discover ways to bring about change. Families work with a therapist, either on their own, or alongside another therapist/s who will be in the room, or using a one-way mirror, to help think about the family and the therapy. This will be explained in advance if it is to happen. Meetings often take place every two to three weeks, but this will be decided with the family. Family therapy has been used effectively for difficulties which both children and adults face.
The patient is seen on their own weekly or sometimes more frequently - with children it can typically be three times a week. Work normally lasts a year, or sometimes more, but the work will be regularly reviewed. Meetings are at the same time each week, and in the same room, as this consistency helps patients get the most out of their treatment. The work is led by the patient, which means that the therapist will follow the patient's lead, rather than start sessions with questions. This treatment is based on understanding the patient through the relationship they develop with the therapist, and therefore the therapist is likely to draw attention to this relationship as the work progresses.
Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT)
Cognitive behaviour therapy or CBT is a relatively short-term treatment for both adults and children. Patients are normally seen for between eight and twelve sessions, where specific goals will be worked on in partnership with the therapist. It is common for 'homework' tasks to be worked on between sessions, such as completing diaries or practicing different ways of doing things. CBT is normally used for relatively mild depression and anxiety.
Interpersonal therapy (IPT)
Interpersonal therapy or IPT is a time-limited and structured psychotherapy for both adults and young people. It is typically delivered over sixteen sessions. It looks at the ways in which current difficulties in relationships contribute to psychological stress, and the ways in which psychological problems affect relationships. IPT focuses primarily on relationship problems. It aims to help people to recognise the problems they face with others and to make changes in their relationships.
A variety of approaches to group work are available for all ages. Patients are seen in carefully selected groupings related to their problems or experiences. Appointments are usually offered once a week. Most of our groups meet for a minimum period of one year.
Parent Training groups
We run parent training groups that are well established and have a good evidence base for their effectiveness. These groups tend to be eight to twelve meetings long, with clear tasks given to parents to work on in between meetings. Working in groups with other parents who have experienced similar difficulties can be very supportive, and parents can get good ideas from the strategies others are using.
Couples are seen together, where the work focuses on their relationship as a couple. We offer different kinds of couple work, both short and medium term, depending on the needs of each couple.
Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)
This is a complex method of psychotherapy which integrates many of the successful elements of a range of therapeutic approaches, in combination with eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation, which appear to stimulate the brain's information processing system. EDMR is effective in treating individuals, including children of all ages, who have experienced psychological difficulties arising from traumatic experiences, such as assault, road traffic accidents, war trauma, torture, natural or man-made disasters, sexual abuse and childhood neglect. It is recommended by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder. EMDR is also increasingly used to treat complaints which are not necessarily trauma-related, such as panic disorder, phobias, performance anxiety, self-esteem issues and anxiety-related disorders.
Sometimes our doctors will consider it appropriate to prescribe medication for you or your child for a particular psychological difficulty, such as attention difficulties or depression. In this case your doctor will discuss this with you first, and explain the process and possible side effects.