Psychoeducation refers to the education offered to individuals with a mental health condition and their families to help empower them and deal with their condition in an optimal way. It helps individuals with schizophrenia, clinical depression, anxiety disorders, psychotic illnesses, eating disorders, and personality disorders.
The goal of Psychoeducation is to ensure that the patient and family members understand the illness. By doing this, the patient's own capabilities, resources and coping skills are strengthened and used to contribute to their own health and wellbeing on a long-term basis. It also destigmatizes psychological disturbances and thus diminish barriers to treatment.
Patients and family members, who are more well-informed about the disease, feel less helpless. Patients who receive psychoeducation are less likely to relapse or be readmitted to the hospital. They function better overall and are more satisfied with the treatment they receive.
Important elements in psychoeducation are:
- Information about the disorder
- Emotional discharge
- Support of a medication or psychotherapeutic treatment, as cooperation is promoted between the mental health professional and patient
- Assistance to self-help
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