Types of Therapy

Glossary

  • Adverse effects: implies that the therapy has caused a problem; it is a more general term for a negative impact of therapy, either on a measurable outcome but also in terms of the client’s personal evaluation. The effects could be minor (i.e. not amounting to harm) or severe.
  • Adverse events: refers to serious episodes during the course of therapy (e.g. suicide, severe self-harm, harm to others or homicide). The term is neutral in relation to causation: therapy may or may not be a contributing cause of the adverse events.
  • Boundaries: A boundary is the edge of appropriate behaviour within the relationship between therapist and a client. It depends upon a number of factors including therapeutic approach, contracts and context. Boundaries may depend upon the type and stage of therapy and can be subject to judgement and interpretation. It is important to distinguish between boundary crossings which are harmless non-exploitative deviations from normal practice (e.g. helping up a patient who has fallen); and boundary violations which are likely to be harmful and are not in the service of the patient's well-being (e.g. financial or sexual exploitation).
  • Client (other terms that may be used include service user and patient): the person who goes to see the therapist for help with their difficulties.
  • Clinical psychologist: a mental health professional with highly specialised training in the assessment and psychological treatment of mental health problems.
  • Clinical supervision: A formal and confidential meeting between a clinician and another clinician (usually with training in supervision) for the purpose of reflecting upon their clinical work and/or organisational issues that may impact upon this work.
  • Cognitive- behavioural therapy (CBT)
  • Cognitive-analytic therapy (CAT)
  • Contract (also known as a therapeutic contract):
  • Counselling: Counselling is an umbrella term that cover a range of talking therapies. They are delivered by trained practitioners who work with people over a short or long term to help them bring about effective change or enhance their wellbeing. See Types of Therapy
  • Deterioration: refers to feeling worse rather than better after therapy. Deterioration is assessed in terms of one or more specific outcome measures, i.e. statistically reliable (determined through outcome measures) and clinically significant (determined through client feedback) change in an unfavourable direction. In itself this does not necessarily mean that the therapy has caused harm: it could have, but equally the person may have been on a deteriorating course and could have had a poor outcome over the same timescale if they hadn’t had therapy. It is impossible to draw conclusions about this without other evidence.
  • Dialetical behaviour therapy (DBT)
  • Gestalt therapy
  • Harm: when therapy is the main cause of significant personal distress, suffering or injury or where a significant deterioration in someone’s psychological condition is directly caused by the therapy.
  • Outcome measures: These are questionnaires or survey type materials that therapists use to monitor factors such as thoughts, feelings and behaviours. They are used to assess progress in therapy and to highlight any improvement or deterioration in how a client is feeling or functioning.
  • Personality disorder: refers to a mental health condition in which an individual differs significantly from an average person, in terms of how they think, perceive, feel or relate to others.
  • Person-centred therapy
  • Psychiatrist: a medical doctor who specialises in the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders. They can prescribe medication and may also offer psychotherapy.
  • Psychodynamic therapy
  • Psychologist: Someone who studies the mind and people’s behaviour. See also Clinical Psychologist
  • Psychotherapist: A trained and qualified therapist who treats mental health and psychological problems.
  • Psychological therapy: refers to a broad range of treatments, which aim to reduce distress, symptoms, risk of harm to self and others, improve quality of life and social or occupational functioning by assisting the patient to develop a psychological understanding and learn new skills to manage their mental health problems. See also Psychotherapy
  • Psychotherapy: the process of treating mental health or psychological problems via an interaction between a clinician and a client.
  • Rupture: a tension or breakdown in the collaborative relationship between client and therapist (Safran & Muran, 2006).
  • Therapeutic relationship (also called therapeutic alliance, helping alliance, working alliance): the relationship between a trained clinician and a client which is aimed at producing beneficial changes in the client.
  • Therapist: A person who is trained and skilled in a particular type of therapy.
  • Therapy: Treatment that is intended to heal or improve a client’s condition.
  • Transference: the unconscious redirection of feelings for a signficant person to another (usually the therapist). It is often thought to replicate an important relationship from the client’s childhood. Countertransference refers to the therapist’s redirected feelings towards the client, and may arise from the client’s original transference.