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THERAPY Which talking treatment do I need?

Whether you’re stressed, depressed or anxious, there’s a therapy out there to suit you. Here’s the Healthista BS-Free guide.

Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) Learned in a group course and practiced at home, helps process emotions and changes the way you think. You can also learn it on CDs created by mindfulness authority Professor Mark Williams at the University of Oxford They’re £23 from where you can also find courses or get them free through Mind at or 0300 123 3393 Great for stress, depression, anxiety or if talking therapy irks you.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Talk through problems and get practical mental tools to stop the negative thought patterns that lead to problems such as depression, phobias, OCD and anxiety in weekly sessions for two to 12 months. It’s the therapy most often carried out when you’re referred by therapy on the NHS. Talk to your GP or find a private therapist at Great for depression, stress, OCD, anxiety, phobias

Solution Focused Brief Therapy Can work in one to five sessions through a series of questions, answers and specific goal-setting and 50-80 per cent of patients report lasting improvement. See Great for specific issues or phobias for example a fear of crossing bridges

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Based on accepting things you can’t change, it shows you the psychological tools to identify what you want and value most and commit to taking action to be happier. See The Reality Slap (Robinson £9.99) by Dr Russ Harris gives a great intro to this pioneering new therapy. Great for anxiety, stress, body issues and depression

Compassion Focused Therapy Focuses on learning ways to nurture, support and soothe yourself through the habitual, negative thought patterns that cause unhappiness. See or read Healthista favourite Professor Paul Gilbert’s groundbreaking book The Compassionate Mind (Constable £6.99)
Great for addiction, overeating, eating disorders, body dysmporphia, depression

Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) A therapist guides you through rhythmic eye movements while recalling a traumatic event to stimulate the brain’s processing system and speed up recovery. See Great if you feel held back by unresolved issues in your past

Existential psychotherapy Scary name but the focus is on reality, exploring choices and taking assertive action in 6-8 weekly sessions. Find a therapist at Great for indecision, depression, relationship problems and past trauma.

Art therapy Mental health charity Mind describe it as good for people that have trouble expressing themselves through words. IIn groups or one-to-one, it uses music, painting, clay, dance, drama or voice to help people resolve issues and feel better. See Great if you feel too upset to talk or talking isn’t your thing

Not sure what you need? Search for an accredited therapist using key words at the British Psychology Society or The British Association for Counselling and Therapy.

In crisis? Call the MIND helpline 0300 123 3393

*Source: The Future Foundation

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