Strengths and Weaknesses of Systematic Desensitisation

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  • Systemation Desensitisat-ion
    • Weakness
      • Suitable for patients
        • Only suitable for those who can learn relaxation techniques
        • Only suitable for those with a vivid imagination to imagine feared objects/ situations
        • This may limit the number of phobic patients
      • Risk of Harm
        • Risk of psychological harm to the patient of it is not effective.
        • Long-term benifits of eradicating the phobia as outweighinthe short- term costs
      • Phobia Symptoms
        • This is the idea that a phobia is a sympton of an underlying symptom
        • When one phobia is removed, another phobia takes over.
        • Not curing the actual under lying cause of the phobia, mearely the symptoms.
    • Strengths
      • Effectivness
        • Research shows that S.D is more effective as a treatment
        • Gilroy et al followed up 42 who were treated for a spider phobia. After both 3 months and 33 months after treatment, they were less fearful than the control group.
        • Strength because it shows that S.D is more helpful in controlling anxiety.
      • Range of Patients
        • It is suitable for a diverse range of patients
        • The alternative is Flooding, which involves an extreme form of a phobic stimulus to eradicate the anxiety.
        • This is seen as a more ethical behavioural treatment compared to Flooding
      • Effort for the patient
        • In general are quick and require less effort on the part of the patient
        • Because of this, successful outcomes are relatively quickly
        • This is compared to such treatment such as CBT


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