Psychological therapies for schizophrenia

  • Psychological therapies for schizophrenia:
  • AO1:
  • Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT):
  • the aims of CBT in general are to help patients identfy irrational thoughts and try to change them. This may involve discussion of how likely a ptient's beliefs are to be true, and consideration of less threatening possibilities. Cbt helps patients to understand their symptoms, they are helped to make sense of how their delusions and hallucinations impact on their feelings and behviour. For example, a patient may hear voices and believe they are deamons so they will be afraid. Offering explanations for these symptoms reduces anxiety and helps the patient realise their beliefs aren't based on reality. 
  • Family therapy:
  • Family therapy is with families rather than individual patients, aiming to improve communication and interaction in the family. Family therapists try to reduce stress within the family that may contribute to the patients risk of relapse (reduce levels of EE). 
  • Pharaoh et al identified a range of strategies family therapists use to reduce the liklelihood of relapse and readmission to hospital. For example, reduce stress of caring for a relative with schizophrenia. Improve ability of family to anticipate and solve problems. Reduce guilt and anger in family members. Improve beliefs about and behaviour towards schizophrenia. 
  • Token economies:
  • Token economies are reward systems (operant conditioning) used to manage the behaviour of patients with schizophrenia who spend long periods in psychiatric hospitals. Token (coloured disks) are given to patients who carry out desirable behaviours (getting




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