does psychoanalytic therapy work

A Clear Eyed Endorsement of Psychoanalytic Therapy

Psychoanalytic therapy is effective for many millions of people, but somehow this remains a topic of debate within the media. Thankfully there are voices such as this one explaining why psychoanalytic therapy works, and doing so with measured, rational language that anyone can understand:

‘One of the distinguishing features of psychoanalysis is that it focuses on people's experience rather than just their behaviour,’ says Keogh. In doing so, he believes that psychoanalysis has a particularly important role to play in helping people who have experienced ‘very protracted and intense developmental histories’, such as ongoing abuse.

But abuse alone cannot explain the great number of people who seek out psychoanalytic therapy; there must be something else at work. Indeed, our understanding of the human unconscious is the key, as it undergirds a great many issues of anxiety, compulsion and depression which touch us all:

However, he adds that tapping into the unconscious may also help people with recurrent problematic behaviour, where the patient cannot pinpoint a reason for their distress. ‘So we are very interested also in that which is not immediately conscious to patients, that may have some bearing on their emotional pain and the problems that they recurrently suffer,’ says Keogh.

PPSC is the nation’s leader at integrating the best ideas from analytic therapy with other modalities such as mindfulness. Our ultimate goal is to help our patients with the issues that ail them, and do so in a safe environment where the many benefits of talk therapy can flower. To find a therapist in New York today, contact us.

On the Effectiveness of Psychoanalytic Therapy

Analytic therapy doesn't always play nice with so-called “evidence based medicine,” not least because long-term therapy does not neatly fit into the limited sample sizes and rapid timelines such studies rely upon. More crucially, the subjective improvements that arise from psychodynamic therapy can be hard to quantify and even harder to observe from outside; often they are subtle but essential transitions which resist easy classification. Even so, there is a growing body of research that which consistently confirms the notion that analytic psychotherapy is both useful and persistent:

However, the acid test of the efficacy of any method lies in the availability of hard evidence in the form of research. And, as it happens, we have two recent studies of psychoanalysis that offer evidence of its validity. . . .

The author goes on to describe two recent studies which have demonstrated the power of psychoanalytic therapy. The key, he says, is what makes this therapy unique: the relationship between therapist and patient, and the many ways this relationship can act as a prism for understanding the patient’s deepest issues.

We have seen precisely this dynamic yield extraordinary results time and again. If you’d like to find a therapist in NYC today, including low-cost psychotherapy and experts in many subspecialties, please contact the experts here.