26 Therapeutic Interventions For Lasting Change (2021)

8 min read

You know, if you’ve ever had to stage a therapeutic intervention, it’s a dramatically serious situation with love and compassion at its core.

If your goal is to improve your skills and find new ways to get benefits for yourself or your clients, you came to the right place.

In this article is the most comprehensive list of various therapeutic interventions. Read to the end for various new treatments to look into. 

Let’s dive right into it.

Therapeutic Interventions
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What Are Some Therapeutic Interventions?

An intervention is an effort by individuals or groups caring for the well-being of someone who’s either in need of help yet refuses it, or is unable to initiate or accept help.

A therapeutic intervention must maintain in the forefront, by each professional or loved one, respect for the client. To uphold and integrate into the plan of care all of the client’s personal values and beliefs, without exception, to support the client.

Despite any and all biases, values, beliefs and opinions of the interventionist, the client is the center of care, not the nurse, another health care provider or loved one.

  • A therapeutic intervention can include services in clinical practice as psychological, physical, or even pharmacological. It may be led or guided by a professional interventionist or by friends or family members, with or without the guidance of a professional, depending on the circumstances.
  • In some cases, an intervention takes the form of a confrontation or meeting between a person who may have depression or who’s mental health is engaged in self-destructive behavior—resistant to assistance—and concerned friends or family members.
  • In other cases, where individuals whose mental health doesn’t let them make decisions for themselves, a therapeutic intervention is a decision to take action on their behalf. This method may not work for everyone.
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What Are Therapeutic Techniques?

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of psychotherapy that focuses on your relationship between thoughts, emotions, and behavior. Specifically, since your thoughts create your emotions, which then drive behavior affecting your mental health and can cause depression.

This type of clinical therapy works by learning to identify and correct a negative thought that influences a certain emotion bringing on anxiety and depression. 

  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy

Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) is similar to CBT in clinical practice, but it focuses on the way patients’ emotions are connected to thoughts and behavior rather than the other way around.

DBT also incorporates the concepts of acceptance and mindfulness making it easier to let go of things you cannot control that lead to depression. Then learning to accept things that are unpleasant or upsetting, and how to live peacefully with yourself and your environment alleviating anxiety and depression.

  • Client-Centered Therapy

Client-centered therapy is a form of humanistic therapy rejecting the notion of the therapist being in control of the session.

This perspective allows you to be in charge. The therapist guides you to understand your inner struggles and feelings. By taking a non-directive approach, this allows you to explore yourself freely and express thoughts, feelings, and desires without interruption or redirection.

  • Gestalt Therapy

Gestalt therapy is another form of humanistic therapy in which the therapist expresses unconditional acceptance and empathy while keeping you focused on the present. 

The goals here are self-awareness and acceptance of your reality. Like client-centered therapy, the therapist acts as a guide, not a leader. You grow in your way on your own time without interruption or influence from the therapist.

  • Existential Therapy

Existential therapy focuses on philosophical and existential themes rather than technique or evidence-based practices.

You and the therapist focus on the internal and spiritual struggles you face to achieve existential, emotional, and psychological understanding. The goal here is insight, not resolution. With insight, you gain an understanding of yourself and learning how you fit into the world.

  • Eye Movement Desensitization And Reprocessing

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a relatively new form of therapy techniques specifically designed to reach people who have post-traumatic stress disorder and related issues like anxiety and depression.

EMDR is designed to aid you in coping with trauma and abuse by lessening the intensity of any particular traumatic memories and the distressing symptoms that they cause. EMDR therapists use exercises like having you follow the trail of a pointer with your eyes to distract the brain from becoming too overwhelmed.

Relational Focus
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What Are Types Of Interventions?

Different treatment strategies vary depending on the type, severity, and duration of patients’ therapeutic needs. Here are a few of the most well known approaches for common healing requirements.

  1. Addiction

An approach to assist an individual who has refused to change habitual and harmful behavior is group intervention. A mediated, supportive, and gentle meeting is often staged to support this individual.

  1. Individual Behavioral Strategy

These types of strategies are helpful when working with youth. They include, but are not limited to positive reinforcement, time-limited activities, and immediate behavior reinforcement.

When working with a youth who has had difficulty with inappropriate reactionary behaviors in the past, these strategies are vital for safety and growth.

  1. Crisis Intervention

A therapist or qualified professional can support a healthy processing of a traumatic event. Help to gain a clear perspective and support after a crisis occurs requires special training and skills for this approach.

  1. Psychopharmacology Intervention

These are typically used in patients with more severe symptoms, although they seem to be used broadly.

When in combination with effective psychotherapy, improvements can be made in a significant number of people with psychological disruption. It requires a licensed prescriber.

  1. Positive Psychology Intervention

A great deal of research has been done applying intervention in positive psychology for clients. Therapists with a deeper understanding of the benefits can help patients return to health and lead more fulfilling lives.

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Examples Of Therapeutic Interventions

Counseling is a wonderful and valuable tool in treating all kinds of mental health disorders and substance addictions.

These are some common tools for counseling interventions.

  • Behavioural Interventions

These strategies are used to support patients to modify damaging, unhealthy behaviors, like depression, by offering comprehensive care—the intervention can be delivered by many different types of professionals, in many kinds of ways.

They are supplemented by resources and consistent interfacing with patients in order to help them find success adhering to newly modified conduct.

This can take many forms, such as a doctor advising a patient on how to modify diet and exercise habits to decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes, or a school counselor helping a child learn positive strategies to eliminate disruptive or problematic behavior in the classroom. 

  • Affective Interventions

These kinds of strategies focus on a patient’s feelings. With effective treatment, patients who grapple with overly strong feelings can identify and express those feelings properly, and learn how to manage them. 

In an exercise, therapists can give patients a list of various feelings (fear, anger, happiness, etc.) and ask them to take an inventory of the predominant feelings experienced over a particular period of time.

Affective treatments can help patients see how different emotions may be interrelated; allow patients to regain responsibility for them and communicate them properly.

  • Cognitive Interventions

This type of psychological intervention is geared toward those people who are too caught up in their own thoughts, specifically negative or erroneous ones.

In essence, thoughts govern every aspect of a patient’s life—thoughts, feelings and actions.

Thought patterns dictate a person’s actions and how they live their lives, therefore troublesome ones take away a person’s own agency. In these cases, it’s imperative to replace negative thoughts with positive ones to transform a patient’s beliefs, self-image, and outlook on life.

Perhaps the most common form is found in CBT. With this treatment, the counselor works with patients to deconstruct harmful thought patterns and break negative connections that have formed in their minds regarding certain situations and issues. 

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List of Therapeutic Interventions

Here are 26 approaches for a therapeutic intervention with summary descriptions.

  1. Cognitive–Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Addresses health and mental health issues to better management of interpersonal and social issues, such as social skills deficits and delinquency. This one to one work is in support, guidance and management of depression.

  1. Behavioural Therapies

This model focuses on how behaviors change when the environment changes. Like when a child’s antisocial behaviors increase as a result of adult attention. Also when a person learns to respond in a particular way (e.g. with anxiety) to a neutral stimulus (e.g. a place) by connecting the neutral stimulus with a traumatic event (e.g. sexual assault, humiliation).

  1. Modelling and Skills Training

What we think influences what we do and how we respond to other people and events, and our experiences lead us to expect certain outcomes from certain courses of action under certain circumstances.

  1. Trauma-Focused CBT (TF-CBT)

TF-CBT directly addresses traumatic symptoms, alongside other components typical of a CBT intervention, such as coping skill training and symptom management, cognitive restructuring and gradual exposure.

  1. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

This model is a manualized intervention developed by Shapiro et al. EMDR involves the identification and processing of traumatic memories using bilateral stimulation, desensitisation through imaginal exposure, and challenging and replacing unhelpful beliefs about the trauma.

  1. Attachment-Orientated Intervention

An attachment intervention generally involves caregiver–infant sessions, and aims to enhance parental sensitivity to emotional and behavioural cues in order to improve a child’s attachment security (e.g. Moss et al). 

  1. Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up (ABC)

ABC focuses specifically on disorganised attachment styles, associated with frightening or frightened parental behaviour rather than purely a lack of attunement or insensitivity by primary care. 

  1. Parent–Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT)

Developed by Sheila Eyberg, it was designed to help parents establish a secure and nurturing relationships with their child, and enhance prosocial behaviour while decreasing undesirable behaviour.

  1. Child-Parent Psychotherapy

CPP is a home-based, manualized intervention provided on a weekly basis for 1 year by trained master’s level therapists.

  1. Parenting Intervention

Parent training interventions aim to change unhelpful or maladaptive primary care practices in order to improve child development and well-being.

  1. Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP)

DDP is designed to address the impairments associated with attachment disorders and complex childhood trauma. The intervention uses the child–therapist relationship to establish a relational context in which the child can learn how to engage with, and benefit from, relationships with others.

  1. Systemic Family Therapy (FT)

Most forms of FT are informed primarily by structural family systems theory and draws on a wide range of techniques from other intervention types, such as CBT.

  1. Transtheoretical Intervention
  1. Multisystemic FT

MST is a short-term, multifaceted intervention for children and young people who may have serious psychosocial and behavioural disorders.

  1. Multigroup FT
  1. Family-based Programme
  1. Psychoeducation

Psychoeducational intervention is to help people understand how their problems have arisen and how they are maintained as an important first step in empowering them to address those problems well.

  1. Group work with children

The use of therapeutic groups is a process in which the group format is central.

  1. Psychotherapy/Counselling

A non-judgemental, insight-orientated approach with a strong focus on the therapeutic alliance and dynamic relational processes with therapists or group members.

  1. Peer Mentoring

Peer mentoring aims to help those children whose social functioning within schools has been adversely affected by maltreatment to acquire key developmental skills, namely the ability to form and maintain effective peer relationships.

  1. Treatment Foster Care

Services designed specifically to meet the developmental, social and emotional needs of children within foster care with particularly challenging behaviour.

  1. Therapeutic Residential/Day Care

Creates a nurturing, stable and consistent environment and a predictable routine for children and young people who need specialist help, and whose problems make it difficult to provide these services in any other fashion.

  1. Coordinated Care

Coordinated care is designed to provide a single point of entry to overall services for the patient, combined with a seamless system of services delivery.

  1. Arts Therapy

Maltreated children can find it difficult to verbalise their experience, and may feel intimidated by clinical surroundings or too overwhelmed to speak of abuse experiences. Arts-based therapies are thought to help facilitate the expression of thoughts, feelings and life narratives.

  1. Play/Activity Intervention

Following the theory that play and activity are vital for healthy childhood development. Play therapy services provide playful settings to communicate complex ideas that would often be otherwise difficult.

  1. Animal Therapy

Research shows that animals (from dogs through to horses) aid the therapeutic environment through the settings of warmth, acceptance, empathy and unconditional love. This treatment lessens anxiety for many children, making overall support possible.

These fairly new and trusted treatments can guide you or someone you know to benefit by overcoming anything from anxiety and depression to deeply traumatic issues. A therapeutic intervention gets great results ✅with many approaches available.

If you’ve found this information valuable, please forward this article to someone you know who these services could assist.

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