Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy is a type of talking therapy used to treat emotional, social and mental health problems. A trained psychotherapist offers a safe and confidential environment where you can express your feelings and find ways to cope or change the way you think and behave with the aim to improve your mental wellbeing. Our psychotherapists hold professional memberships such as the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) and UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP).

There are many psychotherapy approaches ranging from one to one sessions to role plays within groups.

At Ramsay Health Care UK, we offer psychotherapy to help treat many conditions including: depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, eating disorders and psychosexual difficulties. Our treatment options can include: cognitive behavioural therapy, stress management, cancer counselling and psychosexual therapy.

Common conditions

Depression

When you're clinically depressed you feel persistently sad for weeks or months, rather than just a few days. These lasting feelings of sadness and hopelessness may also be accompanied by a loss of interest in the things you used to enjoy and feeling very tearful. Many people with depression also have symptoms of anxiety.

There can be physical symptoms too, such as feeling constantly tired, sleeping badly, having no appetite or sex drive, and complaining of various aches and pains.

Anxiety

Anxiety is a feeling of unease, worry or fear, that can be mild or severe. Some people find it hard to control their anxieties and constantly feel anxious which can often affect their daily lives.

Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) is a long term condition whereby you to feel anxious about a wide range of situations and issues. If you suffer from GAD, you’ll feel anxious most days and you may struggle to remember the last time you felt relaxed. As soon as one anxious thought is resolved, another appears about something else.

GAD can cause both psychological and physical symptoms. These can include feeling restless or worried, having trouble concentrating or sleeping and, dizziness or heart palpitations.

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

If you have obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) you’ll have obsessive thoughts that cause a compulsive activity. An obsessive thought is unwanted or unpleasant and causes feelings of anxiety, disgust or unease. A compulsive activity is a repetitive behaviour that tries to temporarily relieve the unpleasant feelings brought on by the obsessive thought.

For example, someone with a fear of their house being burnt down may feel they need to check that that they haven’t left the cooker on several times before they can leave the house.

OCD can range from mild to severe. In severe cases it can completely take over a person’s life.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder caused by very traumatic events. If you have PTSD you may relive the stressful, frightening or distressing event through nightmares and flashbacks. You may feel isolated, irritable and guilty and you may have problems sleeping or concentrating. These symptoms are often acute and persistent and impact significantly on your daily life.

Eating disorders

Typically, if you’ve an eating disorder you’ll have an abnormal attitude towards food that changes your eating habits and behaviour. For example, you may focus excessively on your body weight and shape, which will cause you to make unhealthy food choices and result in poor health.

The most common eating disorders are:

  • anorexia nervosa – when a person has an abnormally low body weight due to an intense fear of gaining weight. They may starve themselves, vomit after eating or exercise excessively.
  • bulimia – when a person has regular episodes of binge eating and is then deliberately sick or uses laxatives to prevent weight gain.
  • binge eating disorder (BED) – when a person feels compelled to overeat large amounts of food on a regular basis.

Psychosexual difficulties

Many people experience sexual difficulties at some point during their adult lives yet sexual dysfunction is seldom discussed and often endured in silence. The cause of these problems may be physical or psychological or both.

Common sexual and psychosexual problems for men include: erectile dysfunction, premature or delayed ejaculation, a lack of sexual desire and sexual addiction, known as hypersexual disorder. For women psychosexual difficulties include: a lack of sexual desire or arousal, painful sex and a lack of sexual enjoyment or orgasm.

Common treatments

Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT)

Cognitive behavioural therapy helps to identify unhelpful thoughts and behaviours and to learn or relearn healthier skills and habits. Cognitive therapy focuses on an individual's pattern of thinking while behaviour therapy looks at associated actions.

CBT has been shown to help with many different types of emotional and behavioural problems. These include: anxiety, depression, panic, phobias, stress, eating disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and sexual dysfunction.

CBT is an active therapy as it works through current problems and helps you deal with them in a more positive way. You can do CBT individually or with a group of people. You’ll normally have between five and twenty sessions with a therapist.

Stress management

Stress is one of the most common mental health problems in the UK. It can negatively impact on relationships, work performance, and lead to panic attacks and depression. Commons signs of stress include: irritability, concentration problems, trouble sleeping, lack of motivation and loss of libido. Stress can also contribute to physical symptoms such as: IBS, headaches, muscular tension and high blood pressure.

Stress management through counselling and psychotherapy helps you explore the underlying causes of your stress and anxiety, including those created by work, family, and past experiences. Our psychotherapists or counsellors who are specialised in stress management will work with you to develop stress-reduction techniques and to promote psychologically healthier patterns of living.

Stress management looks at the contributing factors to your stress and stress triggers, then offers individual coping strategies to manage stressful situations and improve your ability to handle pressure and your reaction to stress. Stress management is a long term solution.

Cancer counselling

The impact of a cancer diagnosis presents enormous challenges both for patients and their close family and friends. It isn’t always easy to talk to close members about fears and feelings and many people feel alone on their cancer journey.

Cancer counselling provides valuable emotional support to cancer patients to help them with difficult decisions and feelings. At Ramsay Health Care UK our team of specialist counsellors and psychotherapists have many years’ experience of working with patients with cancer issues. Cancer counselling is also available to family and partners to support them with the emotional burdens of their loved one’s life changing illness.

The opportunity to talk with someone independent, at a time set aside just for that purpose, can help to process the difficult emotions which are accumulating and offer some relief. Cancer counselling offers a safe and non-judgemental space to think about potentially difficult choices, for example, how to tell others about your diagnosis or how to prepare for death in the case of a terminal diagnosis.

Psychosexual therapy

Psychosexual therapy can be used to treat many sexual difficulties including: a loss of sexual desire, painful intercourse, difficulties with orgasm and arousal, premature or delayed ejaculation and erectile dysfunction.

It aims to get to the root of the problem which may be: physical (the effect of illness, accident, surgery or medications), psychological (depression, anxiety, stress or other mental health problems), emotional (such as unhappiness due to other problems in the relationship), situational (only happen in certain circumstances) or a combination of several of these factors.

Psychosexual therapy involves talking to our experienced and confidential psychotherapists as a couple or on your own. Initially your psychotherapist will take you through a psychosexual assessment to gather more understanding of the problem and then an individual treatment plan will be developed.

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