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Individual therapy is a cornerstone of addiction and mental health treatment. It is an effective method for investigating the underlying causes of addiction and psychological issues. During sessions, the client works one-on-one with a therapist to explore thoughts, feelings and behaviors that contribute to their problems.

Also called talk therapy or psychotherapy, a key component of individual therapy is the collaborative effort between the therapist and client in developing a roadmap to recovery. Frequency and duration of individual therapy is based to a large degree on a client’s needs, treatment goals and progress. Individual therapy is highly flexible in that sessions are customized to address a client’s changing needs throughout the recovery process.

How Individual Therapy Helps

Individual therapy can be helpful in recovery from addiction, emotional trauma/post-traumatic stress disorder, codependency, grief or loss, depression, anxiety and other behavioral problems. Therapy helps clients confront barriers interfering with their emotional and mental well-being. Psychotherapy has the potential to improve coping skills and reduce destructive behaviors. Research shows individual therapy reduces relapses of moderate depression and anxiety and the positive effects can endure well beyond treatment.

Benefits of Individual Therapy

Individual therapy builds self-awareness and can increase positive feelings such as compassion, self-esteem, love and courage. For many clients, psychotherapy is a means of self-growth and self-actualization. Studies indicate individual therapy is beneficial in an estimated 75% of individuals who participate in it. Benefits include:

  • Increased insight and compassion
  • Enhanced self-awareness
  • Heightened self-empowerment
  • Improved interpersonal relationships
  • Healthier coping skills
  • Greater self-esteem
  • Reduced anxiety, depression and self-criticism
  • Decreased negative emotions and anger
  • Reduced risk of relapse

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