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Group therapy is a form of psychotherapy that involves one or more therapists working with several people at the same time. This type of therapy is widely available at a variety of locations including private therapeutic practices, hospitals, mental health clinics, and community centers. Group therapy is sometimes used alone, but it is also commonly integrated into a comprehensive treatment plan that also includes individual therapy and medication.
The principal advantages of group therapy include:
Group therapy allows people to receive the support and encouragement of the other members of the group. People participating in the group can see that others are going through the same thing, which can help them feel less alone.
Group members can serve as role models to other members of the group. By observing someone successfully coping with a problem, other members of the group can see that there is hope for recovery. As each person progresses, they can, in turn, serve as a role model and support figure for others. This can help foster feelings of success and accomplishment.
Group therapy is often very affordable. Instead of focusing on just one client at a time, the therapist can devote his or her time to a much larger group of people.
Group therapy offers a safe haven. The setting allows people to practice behaviors and actions within the safety and security of the group.
By working in a group, the therapist can see first-hand how each person responds to other people and behaves in social situations. Using this information, the therapist can provide valuable feedback to each client.