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What is short-term psychotherapy?

Sheri Van Dijk
Psychiatry

There are many different types of psychotherapy; and there are different types of therapy depending on the issues you have or the illness you're dealing with. Short-term psychotherapy isn't always realistic (for example, if you have borderline personality disorder, you will likely require long-term treatment).

But if you're looking for something short-term - whether because of finances, or just because you don't want to be in therapy very long - you should be looking for a therapy that teaches you skills. Many short-term psychotherapies (such as CBT or Solution-Focused therapy) focus on helping people learn skills to get back to a higher level of functioning, to improve mood, to alleviate symptoms, etc.

Short-term psychotherapy ("talk therapy") for depression lasts 10 to 20 weeks. During that time, you work with a mental health provider to overcome a traumatic experience(s) and/or learn how to cope with your symptoms of depression.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.