Biological Basis of Psychotherapy Treatments

Many studies have found that psychotherapy is as effective as psychopharmacology in terms of influencing changes in behaviors, symptoms of anxiety, and changes in mental state. Changes influenced by psychopharmacology can be explained by the biological basis of treatments. But how does psychotherapy achieve these changes? Does psychotherapy share common neuronal pathways with psychopharmacology? For this Discussion, consider whether psychotherapy also has a biological basis.
Learning Objectives Biological Basis of Psychotherapy Treatments
Students will:
• Evaluate biological basis of psychotherapy treatments
• Analyze influences of culture, religion, and socioeconomics on personal perspectives of psychotherapy treatments
To prepare:
• Reflect on foundational concepts of psychotherapy.
By Day 3
Post an explanation of whether psychotherapy has a biological basis. Explain how culture, religion, and socioeconomics might influence one’s perspective of the value of psychotherapy treatments.
Support your rationale with evidence-based literature.
Psychotherapy is a biological treatment because it actually addresses the brain in accordance with the brain development, maturation, as well as brain’s operations. This is because psychotherapy follows the ideologies of evolutionary adaptation and hence it is consistent with genetics (Jeon & Kim, 2016). As a result, psychotherapy treats and heals the problematic adaptations of the brain in exactly the same manner these problematic adaptations initially evolved. This is because psychotherapy disengages maladaptive brain mappings and substitutes these mappings with new and constructive mappings. Normally, the brain maps memories and experiences by connecting and linking many neuronal connections; consequently, psychotherapy deactivates the defective mappings and replaces them with new mappings (Zaman & Mark, 2016). Biological Basis of Psychotherapy Treatments

According to Jeon & Kim (2016) the implicit memory structure in the brain is responsible for processing information about affect and forms huge quantities of multifaceted information excerpts and stocks rules. The learning of the rules is implicit and this results in self-perpetuating bias when it comes to future interpretations of experiences; these interpretations guides and directs behaviors without any reflection (Zaman & Mark, 2016). During psychotherapy, there is reevaluation and reflection of the implicit rules and hence change is instituted by learning new patterns that are repeated continually until the new habit and behavior is embedded within the implicit memory structure in the brain. Accordingly, effective psychotherapy results to long-term behavioral, cognition and emotional change (Mathew & Ahn, 2014). The main types of psychotherapies include; psychodynamic, behavioral, and cognitive therapy. Behavioral psychotherapy addresses the dysfunction in modest forms of memory and learning and the associated motor behavior. The brain structures involved in behavioral psychotherapy include the hippocampus, amygdala, as well as basal ganglia (Zaman & Mark, 2016).

On the other hand, cognitive psychotherapy addresses the patterns involved in information processing as well as thinking patterns during a certain mental disorder (Mathew & Ahn, 2014). This means that cognitive psychotherapy tackles the defective and genitive cognitions that contribute to the development of the patient’s psychopathological state; cognitive psychotherapy examines and alters such defective thinking patterns. Neocortex is the brain structures involved in cognitive psychotherapy, particularly the frontal cortex (Zaman & Mark, 2016).

Finally, psychodynamic psychotherapy addresses the interpersonal depiction of the established expectations regarding self and other individuals, as well as their connection to behavior, affect, and behavior, as well as the neuropsychological factors behind these interpersonal representations. The brain regions involved during psychodynamic psychotherapy include subcortical regions and cerebral hemispheres (Zaman & Mark, 2016).

Influences of Culture, Religion, and Socioeconomics on Personal Perspectives of Psychotherapy Treatments Biological Basis of Psychotherapy Treatments

Religion and culture impact an individual’s perspective on psychotherapy in different ways. For instance, an extremely religious person may prefer to seek spiritual intervention, for example, prayers for healing instead of seeking psychotherapy. Individuals may also use religion as coping mechanisms instead of seeking psychotherapy. For example, a study conducted by Agorastos et al (2014) indicated that individuals may use religiosity and spirituality to ease grieving after the death of a loved one. Therefore, an individual’s perspective regarding psychotherapy can be influenced by religious beliefs.

Culture also influences an individual’s perspective regarding psychotherapy. Some cultures view psychotherapy as not appropriate and this influences an individual’s perspective on psychotherapy (Choudhry et al, 2016). For example, in the Czech Republic, psychotherapy is perceived as not okay when compared to pharmacotherapy. The culture supports taking pills than attending therapy sessions where those attending psychotherapy are sometimes stigmatized (Kuska et al, 2016). This, therefore, indicates that culture influences how an individual views psychotherapy because in some cultures attending psychotherapy sessions is very appropriate.

Finally, socioeconomic status also influences an individual’s perspective on psychotherapy. At times a complete psychotherapy can be relatively costly and hence people from low socioeconomic status may not afford this form of treatment and may prefer other forms of treatments. Similarly, those who can afford psychotherapy sessions may view it as an effective option and faithfully attend the sessions (Cummings, 2014). Biological Basis of Psychotherapy Treatments

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