Psychoeducational Groups

group discussion session

A person who is suffering from a psychological problem such as depression or anxiety could use psychoeducational group therapy. This kind of therapy is effective in helping such an individual to return to his normal state of mind.

“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and oftentimes we call a man cold when he is only sad.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The Nature of Psychoeducational Group Therapy

Psychoeducational groups practice a specific type of therapy that centers on educating its members regarding their mental disorders and the many ways of coping. The therapy is based on the concepts of CBT or cognitive behavior therapy. It is a normal component in treating anxieties and phobias.

There are three kinds of phobias that psychoeducational group therapy can effectively treat. They are:

  • Social phobia or social anxiety disorder.
  • Agoraphobia or the fear of going to public places.
  • Specific phobia – an irrational and exaggerated fear of a specific situation or object.

Usual Characteristics of Psychoeducational Groups

Most groups using this form of therapy have several members who have the same diagnosis. As such, the therapy provided by the counselor is focused on their specific mental disorder.

But there are also other groups which may consist of people who have different phobias and anxieties. The rationale for these groups is for each member to focus on practicing life skills that will help them successfully live within a community and be able to accept its rules.

What to Expect in Psychoeducational Groups

“If you know someone who’s depressed, please resolve never to ask them why. Depression isn’t a straightforward response to a bad situation; depression just is, like the weather.” - Stephen Fry

In a group of psychoeducational therapy patients, therapy will be provided for 12 weeks and each session would last around 40 minutes. Their peers who are supportive, who may or may not have the same phobia, could also join the group.

In the first session, the group leader will use psychoeducation to:

  • Normalize the anxiety problem
  • Discuss the behavioral symptoms and allow other patients to share their own opinions and experiences
  • Identify the objective of the patients in joining the therapy group

Following the initial discussions, the group leader may go on to discuss the following topics in the later sessions:

  • Social skills training
  • Prevention of relapse
  • Thinking realistically
  • Social exposure

With regards to order and organization, group therapy involves following certain rules such as treating each member with respect, promptness in attendance and such like.

What are the Benefits of Psychoeducational Groups?

You and your kid will enjoy the following benefits if you will allow him to join a group providing this type of therapy:

  • Learn more about his or her mental condition, that it is not something that cannot be prevented, and that there is a solution to this problem
  • Learn the most effective coping skills that will enable them to better manage their condition. For instance, those who have social phobia or anxiety problems are coached on how to use deep breathing to relax their nerves.
  • Teach them that they are not alone in suffering this condition. Seeing other members of his or her group who are also suffering from this mental condition will encourage them to strive harder to get better.
  • They feel safer with their group since all discussions in the group sessions are treated with confidentiality.

Insurances Accepted