Integrative psychotherapy in intellectual disabilities: using cognitive-behavioural and psychodynamic formulations

Helena Drury (Clinical Psychologist, based at Southwark Psychological Therapies Service, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK)
Nadja Alim (Senior Clinical Psychologist, based at Mental Health in Learning Disabilities Lewisham Psychology, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK)

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities

ISSN: 2044-1282

Publication date: 29 April 2014

Abstract

Purpose

This purpose of this paper is to outline how a combination of different psychological models may inform formulation and treatment, and the benefits for the client and the therapist of working in this way.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a single case study, describing an integrative approach in which psychodynamic ideas were used to inform cognitive-behavioural treatment.

Findings

The integrated approach reported here not only allowed the client to develop his skills in problem solving and taking different perspectives, but also to take a more active role in decisions about his life.

Practical implications

Integrative approaches may be of particular use for individuals who have not shown a full response to interventions based on a single theoretical model. Malan's triangles of insight provide a clear structure to psychodynamic formulation that is easily accessible to emerging psychodynamic practitioners.

Originality/value

Little previous research has described integrative approaches for psychological difficulties in people with an intellectual disability. The approach outlined in this study describes reasons for using an integrative approach, provides one example of how different models may be combined in practice, and describes ways in which the integrative approach enriched the intervention.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the Lewisham Psychology MHiLD team for their helpful and thoughtful feedback on the formulations presented in this case study.

Citation

Drury, H. and Alim, N. (2014), "Integrative psychotherapy in intellectual disabilities: using cognitive-behavioural and psychodynamic formulations", Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 197-209. https://doi.org/10.1108/AMHID-10-2012-0001

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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