In our last article we discussed how psychoanalysis in Vermont works today. It has changed greatly since the days of Sigmund Freud and is no longer tied directly to his theories. However, there are e still echoes of his ideas in therapy today–those which have proven their effectiveness over time.
Does psychoanalysis work?
Let’s turn first to a large, multi-area study. Depression is the most widespread problem in the world today. It is the most common single reason that people seek treatment. This study cited below dealt specifically with patients who were in therapy for depression. The study compared the outcomes of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to those with psychoanalysis.
In their conclusions, the authors of the study state,
“in chronically depressed patients . . . both psychotherapies led to statistically highly significant changes in depressive symptoms three years after the start of the treatments”Psychoanalysis Now
If you cut through the jargon, they are saying both types of therapy helped create improvement for the patients. However, the findings went on to say,
“Three years after the start of the treatments, significantly more patients in psychoanalytical treatments show such inner changes than patients in cognitive-behavioral treatments.”
Again, there is some jargon here, but not only did patients in the psychoanalytic practice report an improvement in their symptoms, but they reported feeling like they had changed as a person. This is what is meant by the phrase “inner changes.”
The goal of ongoing talk therapy (psychoanalysis) is (first) to solve the problem which brings the patient to the therapist. Over time the goal shifts a little to giving the patient the tools they need to solve problems themselves. The study mentioned above shows that psychoanalysis was more effective at creating that kind of change than Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
There is more information on the site Psychoanalysis Now about how psychoanalysis can improve outcomes related to physical illness, personality disorders and long term mental health outcomes. We encourage you to read more about the data.
If you are currently experiencing problems that can be addressed with a Vermont therapist and you’d like to know more about how the process works, please get in touch. We can schedule a call or an in-person consultation.