Shirah Vollmer MD

The Musings of Dr. Vollmer

Why Psychotherapy?

Posted by Dr. Vollmer on May 15, 2013

Check out the animated video on the home page of APSA (link above), which I think is a great explanation of why psychotherapy is so important to build quality of life, in ways that medication management is severely limited. With the movement of psychiatry away from psychotherapy, we are limiting ourselves to a limited treatment, and hence we are leaving to non-MDs the treatment of very complicated mental states with means other than medication. I hope, with some technical assistance to be able to embed that video into my post, but for now, this will be a two step process. I think Dr. Norman Kohn did an excellent job illustrating why the narrative is critical to healing. In the second video, the one that I could embed in my post, there is a tutorial on Freud’s model of the mind. The illustration that we have behaviors which we are ashamed of, or not proud of, or that make us feel guilt, helps us to understand that guilt is the point of inquiry into the recesses of our minds. Understanding this guilt, in addition to minimizing the anxiety which arouses around the guilt, is key to promoting mature and sophisticated human beings. Psychopharmacology, although useful, does not take away guilt and it is this guilt, which is often the key to understanding inconsistent, or neurotic, behavior. More than any other reason, promoting this cause, psychiatrists doing psychotherapy along with psychopharmacology, is a major motivation for this blog. For reasons that seem to be unconscious, at the moment, I felt like I  just had to write this today.

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