What Are Some Treatments for Psychosis?


Quick Answer

Treatment of psychosis requires both antipsychotic medications and psychotherapy, such as supportive psychotherapy, cognitive enhancement therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy, states the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Treatments for psychosis are most effective when doctors administer them as soon as possible, as this can sometimes keep the condition from progressing. During an episode of psychosis, some people require hospitalization and/or sedation, for their own safety. The treatment varies depending on the cause, and may require an extended inpatient stay.

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Full Answer

The psychotherapy modality of supportive psychotherapy focuses on the ability to resolve internal conflicts and cope with the effects of living with psychosis, explains NAMI. Cognitive enhancement therapy uses various exercises during group work or computer use to enhance a person's brain capacity and capability to organize thoughts. Cognitive behavioral therapy teaches people to critically analyze their experiences in order to determine whether they correspond to reality. Psychotherapeutic education and support is also helpful for the family members of people with psychosis, or for others who interact regularly with a psychotic person.

Antipsychotic medications are classified as either typical or atypical, explains NAMI. Typical antipsychotic medications can cause side effects such as muscle stiffness and movement problems. Atypical antipsychotic medications are less likely to cause those problems, but increase the risks of diabetes and obesity.

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