Problem Solving Therapy in the Clinical Practice


  • Mehmet Eskin, Adnan Menderes University,Department of Psychiatry, Turkey

Evidence based or empirically supported psychotherapies are becoming more and more important in the mental health fields as the users and financers of psychotherapies want to choose those methods whose effectiveness are empirically shown. Cognitive-behavioral psychotherapies are shown to have empirical support in the treatment of a wide range of psychological/psychiatric problems. As a cognitive-behavioral mode of action, Problem Solving Therapy has been shown to be an effective psychotherapy approach in the treatment and/or rehabilitation of persons with depression, anxiety, suicide, schizophrenia, personality disorders, marital problems, cancer, diabetes-mellitus etc.

Mental health problems cause personal suffering and constitue a burden to the national health systems. Scientific evidence show that effective problem solving skills are an important source of resiliency and individuals with psychological problems exhibit a deficiency in effective problem solving skills. Problem solving therapy approach to the treatment and/or rehabilitation of emotional problems assumes that teaching effective problem solving skills in a therapeutic relationship increases resiliency and alleviates psychological problems.The book, in the first chapters, gives information on problem solving and the role of problem-solving in the etiology and the treatment of different forms of mental health problems. In the later chapters, it concentrates on psychotherapy, assessment and procedures of problem solving therapy. At the end it provides a case study.

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    Potential audience of the book consists of professionals, academicians, graduate students/residents from a number of professions. They are psychologists, psychiatrists, family physicians, mental health/psychiatric nurses, social workers and counselors. The book is intended to be a primary text.


    Book information

    • Published: November 2012
    • Imprint: ELSEVIER
    • ISBN: 978-0-12-398455-5

    Table of Contents

      Definition and concepts in problem solving therapy

        • What is problem solving therapy?
          • What is problem?
            • What is solution?
              • What is problem solving?
                • The difference between problem solving and solution implementation

                  Resiliency, coping and problem solving

                    • Resiliency
                      • Coping
                        • Problem solving

                          Components of problem solving

                            • Cognitive components of problem solving
                              • Meta-cognitive components of problem solving
                                • Motivational components of problem solving

                                  Theoretical approaches to problem solving

                                    • Social problem solving model
                                      • Problem solving model used in primary health care
                                        • Information processing model of problem solving

                                          Problem solving and mental health problems

                                            • Problem solving and depression
                                              • Problem solving and suicide
                                                • Problem solving and anxiety disorders
                                                  • Problem solving and schizophrenia
                                                    • Problem solving and personality disorders
                                                      • Problem solving and aggression
                                                        • Problem solving and emotional problems secondary to medical conditions

                                                          Efficacy of problem solving therapy in treating mental health problems

                                                            • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for depression
                                                              • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for suicide
                                                                • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for anxiety disorders
                                                                  • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for schizophrenia
                                                                    • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for personality disorders
                                                                      • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for aggression
                                                                        • Efficacy of problem solving therapy for emotional problems secondary to medical conditions

                                                                          Principles, effective therapist characteristics and change mechanisms in psychotherapy

                                                                            • Basic principles and skills in psychotherapy
                                                                              • Effective psychotherapist characteristics
                                                                                • Difficulties faced by beginning therapists
                                                                                  • Change mechanisms in psychotherapy

                                                                                    Assessment in problem solving therapy

                                                                                      • Assessment with clinical interview
                                                                                        • Assessment by self-report measures

                                                                                          Procedures of problem solving therapy

                                                                                            • Structuring the problem solving therapy session
                                                                                              • Session I: Assessment and providing rationale
                                                                                                • Session II: Problem orientation training
                                                                                                  • Session III: Defining problems
                                                                                                    • Session IV: Goal setting
                                                                                                      • Session V: Generating alternative solutions
                                                                                                        • Session VI: Selecting the appropriate solution
                                                                                                          • Session VII: Applying the solution
                                                                                                            • Session VIII: Assessing the application and verification