What Is Psychoanalysis?
Read on to learn about what psychoanalysis is, along with the techniques involved in its practice and how they could benefit you.
Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy
Psychotherapy is a generic word for talking with a psychiatrist, psychologist, or other mental health specialists about mental health issues. Essentially, this differs from psychoanalysis techniques in that psychoanalysis uses those theories and methodologies specifically to discover what is embedded in the unconscious. Not all psychotherapists use psychoanalysis.2
Psychoanalysis and Psychodynamics
Psychodynamic and psychoanalytic theories are closely related; in fact, psychoanalysis is a sub-theory of psychodynamic theory. All psychological theories involving human cognition and behavior are referred to as psychodynamic, while most conceptualizations of psychological cognition and personality are directed to be psychodynamic. They are also attributed to Sigmund Freud’s initial formulation of psychoanalysis.3
History of Psychoanalysis
Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis theory, was and still is widely criticized for his work and views. On the other hand, psychoanalysis techniques still have a significant stronghold on modern therapy. The idea that mental disease might be treated from the unconscious is a key principle in Freud’s conceptual approach to therapy. Additionally, the concept of introspective conversation as a method of creating self-awareness and soul-searching has significantly impacted how mental illness is handled in the present.
Development of Psychoanalysis
Through Freud’s findings from his studies on his patients, he came up with new concepts on the structure of human consciousness. He then put them into three categories: the id, ego, and super ego. This categorization was further grouped into conscious, preconscious, and unconscious levels of the human persona. These categorizations have been the backbone of psychoanalytic theory and are used by several psychoanalysts thereafter.
What is the Id?
Ego vs. Id
What is the Superego?
In the realms of psychic consciousness, the superego might be referred to as the conscience. It is the part of our brain responsible for criticism and morality. This cognitive ability helps the mind differentiate between what is right and wrong.
Conscious vs. Unconscious Mind
A major criticism of Freud’s psychoanalytic theory is the lack of empirical evidence to support its theorization. According to some psychologists, psychoanalytic therapy relies too heavily on speculation and ambiguous concepts.
- Dream analysis4
- Free association
- Freudian slips
- Lacanian psychoanalysis
- Transference psychoanalysis
- Psychoanalysis defense mechanisms
Psychoanalysis and Other Therapies at Pacific Beach Health
There are several differences between behavioral therapy and psychoanalysis; however, one significant difference is their theoretical foundation and approach to solving a patient’s problem. Behavioral therapy focuses on the individual’s immediate environment and relies on the belief that a person’s ideas or thoughts spur emotional insecurity instead of their repressed memories or experiences. Additionally, in psychoanalysis therapy, the patient’s recollection through free association directs the course of the session. Behavioral therapy focuses on achieving specific, actionable goals with each session.
Duration and Cost of Psychoanalysis
The duration of psychoanalytic therapy may vary according to individual needs; working with a psychoanalysis therapist is typically a long-term procedure. Long-term therapy usually takes about fifty sessions, which can ultimately last up to a year. A session may last up to fifty minutes per session and occur at least once a week.
Although psychoanalysis treatment may have been described as an expensive therapy procedure in previous times, its cost depends mainly on the chosen psychoanalyst and their experience level. In addition, insurance can cover psychoanalysis therapy costs at times.
Get Help Today!
At Pacific Beach Health, we understand the beneficial role of adequate mental health therapy in improving the quality of relationships and lifestyles of individuals with behavioral health issues. Therefore, we aim to combine holistic behavioral healthcare with specialized psychotherapy to restore healing and peace to both individualistic and interpersonal relationships. Reach out to us today to get help and support for you or your loved one.