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Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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Psychoanalysis is a method of diagnosing and treating mental and emotional disorders through ascertaining and analysing the facts of the patient's life.

In the basic psychoanalytic technique the analyst trys to reveal very little about himself, encouraging the patient to talk freely about his own thoughts and feelings - free association. The therapist takes a very passive role and only intervenes to ask questions to make the material clearer, confront the patient with contradictions and make interpretations of what the patient has said. As the process continues the patient often begins to avoid certain topics and may show other forms of resistance.

Important concepts in psychoanalysis include:

  • transference
  • treatment alliance
  • resistance

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