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Psychotherapy is a modality of treatment in which the therapist and patient(s) work together to ameliorate psychopathological conditions and functional impairment through focus on (1) the therapeutic relationship; (2) the patient's attitudes, thoughts, affect, and behavior; and (3) social context and development. Developmental differences may influence the format, acceptability, and focus of treatment. For example, a cognitive-behavioral intervention for a child needs to be much more concrete than one for a high school student. The developmental needs and abilities of the child with respect to autonomy or dependence on parents may mediate the acceptability and outcome of individual versus family therapy. Adolescents have much greater freedom to select their own environments and peer groups, which in turn can be important foci for treatment. Journal article by David A. Brent, David J. Kolko; Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, Vol. 26, 1998
A few of psychotherapy's many 21th century advances:
* It has now reached the masses, with millions of people engaging in regular individual and group therapy, taking workshops, seminars and intensive weekends led by therapists.
* Multicultural therapy is rapidly replacing a one-culture mentality with therapists now examing the cultural views of their clients, devising special methods of dealing with people of different backgrounds.
* The12-step and other support groups; have reached education, business, management and labor areas.
* Such major methods, as behavior therapy, cognitive-behavior therapy currently immensely popular today. Many therapists blend many therapies into their own main theory and practice, which is more effective than in the past when we were forced to be loyal to one school of thought.
* The biological and neurological study of emotional disorders recently picked up speed, leading to distinctly improved medication for some disorders.
* Although religious and spiritual issues were seriously neglected in early 20th century are now common in later 21th century psychotherapy.
Magazine article by Albert Ellis; Psychology Today, Vol. 32, November 1999
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