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Treatment of Dissociative Disorders

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Dissociative Disorders treatment usually involves psychotherapy, but there are other treatments for dissociative disorders available.

How are dissociative disorders treated?

Dissociative Disorders treatment usually involves psychotherapy. Find out about other treatments for dissociative disorders.Psychotherapy is the primary treatment for dissociative disorders. This form of therapy, also known as talk therapy, counseling or psychosocial therapy, involves talking about your disorder and related issues with a mental health professional. Your therapist will work to help you understand the cause of your condition and to form new ways of coping with stressful circumstances.

Psychotherapy for dissociative disorders often involves techniques, such as hypnosis, that help you remember and work through the trauma that triggered your dissociative symptoms. The course of your psychotherapy may be long and painful, but this treatment approach often is very effective in treating dissociative disorders.

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Other dissociative disorder treatment may include:

  • Creative art therapy: This type of therapy uses the creative process to help people who might have difficulty expressing their thoughts and feelings. Creative arts can help you increase self-awareness, cope with symptoms and traumatic experiences, and foster positive changes. Creative art therapy includes art, dance and movement, drama, music and poetry.
  • Cognitive therapy: This type of talk therapy helps you identify unhealthy, negative beliefs and behaviors and replace them with healthy, positive ones. It's based on the idea that your own thoughts — not other people or situations — determine how you behave. Even if an unwanted situation has not changed, you can change the way you think and behave in a positive way.
  • Medication: Although there are no medications that specifically treat dissociative disorders, your doctor may prescribe antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications or tranquilizers to help control the mental health symptoms associated with dissociative disorders.

Sources:
Merck Manual
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV)
Sidran Foundation

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