Briefly describe how supportive and interpersonal psychotherapies are similar.

In their treatment of mental illness, interpersonal psychotherapy as well as supportive psychotherapy have some similarities. They are often short-term, time-limited treatments that typically involve short treatment times. Another similarity is that both therapies aim to improve the patient’s quality of life, functioning, and relationships with others.

The therapeutic relationship between the patient and the therapist allows for communication, exploration, and open discussion about their thoughts, feelings, and is a key component of both therapies. Other therapies might include specific interventions to address symptoms and issues such as problem solving or coping strategies.

There are some key differences in the therapies. Supportive psychotherapy tends to be more flexible and tailored to the individual patient’s needs, while interpersonal psychotherapy focuses more specifically on interpersonal relationships and their impact on the patient’s mental health. Interpersonal psychotherapy also tends to be more structured and manualized than supportive psychotherapy, with a specific focus on addressing interpersonal issues that may be contributing to the patient’s mental health concerns.

References: Luborsky, L. (1984). Principles of psychoanalytic psychotherapy: A manual for supportive-expressive treatment. Basic Books. Markowitz, J. C., & Weissman, M. M. (2004). The principles and practices of interpersonal psychotherapy. World Psychiatry, 3(3), 136–139. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1414667/

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