The purpose of this paper is to report the evidence base for the practice of individual psychodynamic psychotherapy with adults with intellectual disabilities (IDs).
In total, 14 papers were reviewed. From these, one existing review and seven individual papers provided enough evidence to support effectiveness of individual psychodynamic psychotherapy for people with IDs.
This research indicates individual psychodynamic psychotherapy to be of benefit. Indeed, all studies reviewed supported individual psychodynamic psychotherapy, but methodological shortcomings weakened the confidence placed in findings for some studies. Limitations of this review include methodological shortcomings of studies reviewed, a small number of existing studies and reliance on case studies.
Therapists and commissioners of services should routinely make individual psychodynamic psychotherapy available as part of a spectrum of therapies available to people with IDs who experience emotional and behavioural problems. This is because it is needed for some clients and they benefit.
Individual psychodynamic psychotherapy for people with IDs adds to the range of therapies available to alleviate emotional distress and enhance well-being. These are necessary to provide a foundation for meaningful contribution to society, particularly for those who have experienced psychological trauma (Frankish, 2016).
This review includes more relevant studies than previous reviews and adds to a limited number of reviews in this area.
McInnis, E.E. (2016), "Critical literature review: effectiveness of individual psychodynamic psychotherapy for adults with intellectual disabilities", Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Vol. 10 No. 4, pp. 233-247. https://doi.org/10.1108/AMHID-09-2015-0040Download as .RIS
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