Treatment of Psychological Disorders
Therapies are classified into 3 categories:
1. Insight therapies (“talking” therapies).
2. Behaviour Therapy – any therapy that’s based on learning principles.
3. Biomedical Therapies
1. Maladaptive behaviours are acquired through “faulty” learning and you can “unlearn” these
behaviours with behaviour therapy.
2. You don’t need to uncover the cause for the disorder.
Systematic Desensitization – (Wolpe, 1958)
1. Set up an anxiety hierarchy.
2. Train the patient in deep relaxation techniques.
3. Imagine the items in the hierarchy while relaxed.
4. “In vivo” situation
Learning Principles that make Systematic Desensitization Effective
1. Counterconditioning – substituting anxiety with relaxation
2. Extinction – weakens anxiety response, and eventually replaces it with relaxation
Implosion Therapy (imagine) & Flooding (in vivo)
Relaxation is not used.
Based on extinction only.
Induce anxiety and prevent the client from avoiding the phobic stimulus.
Based on operant conditioning.
A) Contingency Management
Involves the presentation and withdrawal of positive stimulus contingent upon the