Treatment and intervention
Psychological or talking therapies
There are lots of different types of psychological therapies that you can get for psychosis symptoms. These include:
- Art therapy
- Cognitive behavioural therapy
- Brief cognitive behavioural therapy based interventions
- Family interventions
- Mindfulness-based interventions
- Acceptance and commitment therapy
Click on the psychological intervention name to learn more about it.
Each psychological therapy offers different things. For example, art therapy is a mix of art, making things and talking. Cognitive behavioural therapy relates to what you think (cognitive) and how you act (behavioural). By meeting on your own with a CBT therapist to talk about things that are bothering you, you will learn about the links between your thoughts and your behaviours.
The CBT I had with the Psychologist has been really helpful. She was really good at identifying where my thinking is going astray and helping me, helping it, come back to where it should be. She really helped with that, and yeah, that’s probably been one of the most important things.Jenny, aged 28
Family interventions focus on difficulties that the family may be facing, and plans ways of solving them as a family. Mindfulness based interventions are about being in touch with, and being aware of the present moment and taking a non-judgemental approach to your thoughts and things that happen in your life.
Family work did help for me personally, immenselyGeorge, service user's dad
Acceptance and commitment therapy is aimed at helping you to take the steps towards building a rich, full and meaningful life and at the same time helping you to develop psychological skills to be able to deal with painful thoughts and feelings.
Again, the main aim of each psychological therapy differs. Overall psychological or talking therapies focus on the way you cope with your symptoms and things you can do to help.
There is lots of good evidence that family interventions and CBT are very good at helping people deal with psychosis symptoms. There is less evidence for art therapy, but the research still suggests this can help with psychosis symptoms.
More research is needed before we can understand whether brief CBT, mindfulness, and acceptance and commitment therapy help people with their psychosis symptoms.
CBTCBT's long name is cognitive behavioural therapy. Cognitive relates to what you think, and behaviour relates to what you do.
CBT and Family Therapy should be available through your EIP services, or through local Psychological Therapies services within the NHS.
The other psychological therapies are not all readily available on the NHS.
Read the Treatment Choices booklet for more information on each of these psychological therapies, and how to access them.
Family TherapyExperiencing unusual and distressing symptoms can be difficult not only for you, but also for the people close to you. If you have close family or friends, they can play an important part in helping you to manage your experiences and stay well. Family interventions focus on encouraging understanding, communication and independence within the family, and working through problems and emotions.
Read more: Early Intervention Services