Abnormal Psychology: Mental Health and Mental Illness


How necessary is training in psychotherapy?

A number of studies suggest that patients are equally satisfied after talking to non-professionals as they are after talking to trained mental health professionals. Certainly with short-term problems that are not particularly severe, many people can provide reassurance and support without years of professional training. In order to help people with more serious, complex, or entrenched problems, however, training is unquestionably important. The 1995 Consumers Reports study showed that, in general, people were happier and improved more from treatment with trained mental health professionals than from treatment with nonprofessionals. Moreover, the difference between the two grew the longer people stayed in treatment.


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