Psychological Treatments: The Family
Taking care of a patient with schizophrenia is best done with the help of the patient’s family. Families are a resource, but they may need support and guidance in order to be most effective. This chapter provides practical advice on how to work with families, including how to recognize when a family needs more help and how to modify a stressful family environment, without assigning blame. The stress-diathesis model usefully explains to families how the interaction between genetic- and disease-related weaknesses and stress can cause symptoms in their relative. According to the expressed emotion model, reducing critical comments may reduce relapse risks for those patients who get stressed easily in social interactions, including family interactions. Included in this chapter is a section on a new model of care (“Open Dialogue”) that engages and enlists in help the patient’s larger social network.
KeywordsFamily psychoeducation NAMI Family-to-family program Expressed emotions (EE) Stress-diathesis model Open dialogue
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