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Why we should aim to cure anxiety disorders, not manage them.

Why we should aim to cure anxiety disorders, not manage them.

Anxiety disorders’, as a category, constitute the most prevalent mental health problem in many modern societies. Efforts to understand the phenomenon of troubling anxiety have been made by many branches of psychology and psychotherapy, from classical psychoanalysis to behaviourism to neuropsychology. Today, in Australia and elsewhere, many individuals are engaged in some form of psychotherapy for assistance with a diagnosed anxiety disorder, and cognitive behaviour therapy remains the dominant endorsed approach to helping these individuals. Many more are utilisjng Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors in an effort to manage the problem. It remains the case that many medical and mental health professionals elect to work with anxiety sufferers to minimise and manage their anxiety, rather than seeking to ‘cure’ or remove the problem altogether.   

This presentation argues that professional helpers should be aiming to help anxiety disorder sufferers to completely overcome their problem if this is what the client wishes to achieve, and that there is, in fact, an ethical imperative to do so. It is argued that offering the client a choice of options in this respect is an imperative early step in the process. Important ideas from systems science and family therapy, as well as hypnosis, behaviour therapy and strategic therapy will be discussed in order to elucidate a general ‘method’ by which complete resolution of anxiety disorders – from generalised anxiety, to obsessive compulsive disorder, to panic attacks – is possible. Case examples will be used to illustrate key points.

Speakers: Dr Joel Cullin

WCP 2011

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Lateral violence occurs when the violence associated with oppression is internalised by those who are oppressed, and redirected between the members of the oppressed group. Among Aboriginal and Torres

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