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What is Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP)?


Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP) is an evidence-based treatment shown to be effective in treating a broad range of psychiatric disorders, self-defeating behaviors, relational difficulties, and chronic somatic conditions. This intensive psychotherapeutic modality combines a number of powerful techniques to rapidly uncover and remove barriers to emotional and psychological health. For this reason, ISTDP often works for clients who have not benefited from traditional therapy in the past. The work is both collaborative and active, unfolding within the safety and compassion of the therapeutic relationship. 


Treating body and mind  


ISTDP places heavy emphasis on the bodily experience of feelings, including anxiety symptoms, which are carefully monitored and regulated with the therapist’s help throughout each session. The steady focus on the physiological aspect of emotional experience may initially seem strange to those accustomed to simply “talking about their feelings.” However, once exposed to the power of this approach, clients quickly come to appreciate the value of attending to their moment-to-moment bodily responses. 


Getting off the couch and into life -- quickly


ISTDP is a structured and collaborative modality. It is designed to produce accelerated results. In fact, many clients report a reduction of symptoms and improved functioning after just a few sessions. Total length of treatment varies and is based on a number of factors, the most important of which is the quality of the working alliance between therapist and client. Clients who bring a high level of motivation and commitment to the process can expect to see results in a relatively short period of time.


An Evidence-Based Psychotherapy


A substantial and growing body of evidence supports ISTDP as an effective and cost-saving treatment for a broad range of psychiatric disorders, interpersonal difficulties, and many chronic medical conditions. To learn more about ISTDP, please see below: • •

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