Psychotherapy

Unlike traditional psychiatry, which rarely looks at the brain, Amen Clinics uses brain imaging technology to identify patterns in the brain that may benefit from various forms of psychotherapy.

What is Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy is also known as talk therapy and is used to help people with a range of mental health, emotional, and relationship issues. The goal of psychotherapy is to help you learn how to minimize bothersome symptoms and enhance your own sense of well-being. There are many different types of psychotherapy that involve a variety of helpful tools and strategies. At Amen Clinics, we offer several approaches to psychotherapy including EMDR, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Hypnotherapy, Marital/Couple Therapy, Individual Therapy and more. (See below for more information about these types of psychotherapy.)

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Why Choose Amen Clinics for Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy can be immensely helpful, but it cannot heal underlying brain dysfunction. Because of this, some people spend years in therapy without getting the results they want. Amen Clinics uses brain SPECT imaging to help identify brain health issues that may cause problems in the way you (or your loved ones) think, feel, act, or interact with others. Understanding and healing hidden brain issues can be the key to being more successful with psychotherapy and can improve your ability to follow through and stick with the helpful strategies you learn in psychotherapy.

The Benefits of Psychotherapy

At Amen Clinics, we find that various forms of psychotherapy can improve symptoms of anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other conditions when used as part of a comprehensive treatment plan. Some types of therapy can help you learn to cope better with emotional trauma from the past, stressful situations, and life challenges. Various forms of therapy can introduce you (and your loved ones) to better ways to gain control over your mind and thinking habits to promote better moods. It can also help you develop healthier ways of interacting with your loved ones to improve family dynamics and relationships.

Ready to learn more? Contact a care coordinator today!

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Types of Psychotherapy

Amen Clinics offers several approaches to psychotherapy that help people work through their problems.

Family Therapy

Is someone in your family struggling with a mental health problem, addiction, memory loss, or other cognitive or behavioral issue? Then you know first-hand that when one person is suffering, the whole family suffers. Most people want to blame all the stress and drama on that one person, but in reality, each and every family member (and their brain) contributes to the dysfunctional dynamic. By looking at the brains of the entire family, it can shed light on any family dysfunction. At Amen Clinics, when we scan entire families, we often discover that one or more family members has a diagnosable mental health condition that has gone undetected. Without this knowledge, the family unit would likely continue to struggle.

When you have an understanding of brain health issues within the family unit, family therapy can help you address specific issues, improve relational skills, and build stronger relationships.

Group Therapy

Joining a group of strangers may sound intimidating at first, but group therapy provides benefits that individual therapy may not. Unlike individual therapy sessions, group therapy offers the opportunity to interact with others who have similar issues in a safe and supportive environment. Group members are almost always surprised by how rewarding the experience can be.

Groups can act as a support network and sounding board, and can help you put your own problems in perspective. By witnessing how other people tackle problems and make positive changes, you can discover a whole range of strategies for facing your own concerns.

Individual Therapy

Individual psychotherapy (also called counseling or talk therapy) is an extensively researched and effective approach that has been used to treat emotional, behavioral and social problems in people with a variety of concerns. It involves an interactive process of self-discovery between you and a qualified mental health professional in a safe, caring and confidential environment.

Psychotherapy is most successful when brain imaging has been performed so you can address specific brain health issues. By optimizing the brain, you are more likely to have greater motivation to alter the aspects of your life that no longer serve you or are contributing to your difficulties. Enhanced brain health also makes you better able to stick with the new approaches, techniques, or new ways of thinking you learn in psychotherapy.

Marital & Couples Therapy

No one ever said marriage or being in a relationship was easy! Children, illness, financial problems and stress can all take their toll. What is often forgotten is that brain function determines the behavior of each partner. Your brain is the organ of character, personality and every single decision that you make. If the brain isn’t working properly, even the strongest of relationships can degrade over time.

At Amen Clinics, we don’t just look at the “she said/ he said” aspects. Using SPECT imaging as part of the Amen Clinics Method, we look directly at the brain, which helps us determine if underlying brain issues are contributing to relationship problems.

Hypnotherapy

The American Medical Association recognized hypnotherapy as a standard medical treatment in 1958, and the American Psychological Association followed suit by endorsing it as a branch of psychology in 1960. Since then, it has been used to help people overcome a variety of symptoms and conditions.

Hypnotherapy can be used for a wide range of conditions, including anxiety, depression, weight loss, addiction, pain and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based, action-oriented psychological treatment that focuses on the way people think (cognitive) and act (behavioral). Every time you have a thought, your brain releases powerful chemicals that change the way you feel and behave. Positive thoughts help you feel happy, motivated and relaxed, while negative thoughts make you feel sad, mad, anxious, angry, or out of control.

The problem is that most people tend to believe that all of their thoughts, including the negative ones, must be true—never taking the time to evaluate and question them. Left unchecked, automatic negative thoughts (ANTs) can ruin your life.

CBT focuses on correcting negative thinking patterns and developing accurate, more positive thinking skills, which in turn changes your behavior and can help boost your mood, motivation and determination. Research shows that these techniques can be as effective as antidepressant medication for anxiety and depression.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is an extensively researched psychotherapeutic technique that can produce quick and lasting relief for a variety of symptoms and issues. EMDR is primarily used to treat people suffering from emotional trauma, but it is also being used for people struggling with other conditions. People with the following conditions may benefit from EMDR:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Panic attacks
  • Addictions
  • Mood swings
  • Performance anxiety
  • Phobias
  • Traumatic or disturbing memories
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

EMDR is similar to what occurs naturally during dreaming or REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Therefore, EMDR can be thought of as a physiologically-based therapy that helps you see things in new and less distressing ways.

 

“With A Better Brain Comes A Better Life”

– Daniel G. Amen, M.D.

 

What is EMDR?

One type of psychotherapy referenced above is called EMDR. This stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. This is a psychotherapeutic approach to health and pathology. EMDR therapy uses a structured eight-phase approach that includes:
 
Phase 1: History-taking
Phase 2: Preparing the client
Phase 3: Assessing the target memory
Phases 4-7: Processing the memory to adaptive resolution
Phase 8: Evaluating treatment results

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