Treatment of Psychological Disorders
Rehabilitation treatment for psychological disorders is a process of providing psychological help for patients with chronic diseases or disabilities by rehabilitation therapists who have been professionally trained based on a good therapeutic relationship. People actively infected with COVID-19 are capable of spreading it to a wide range of the population, causing different levels of fear, anger, anxiety, depression, and other emotional problems in multiple groups. Promoting psychological rehabilitation for the vast population affected by COVID-19 is also an essential part of COVID-19 prevention and control efforts.
Objectives of Psychological Rehabilitation
Stabilize the emotions of rehabilitation subjects, reduce or eliminate harmful behaviors, enhance confidence in rehabilitation, improve interpersonal relationships psychological adjustment capabilities, and establish new adaptive behaviors to help rehabilitation subjects to better return to their families, reintegrate into society, and improve their quality of life.
Objects of Psychological Rehabilitation
People affected by COVID-19 are classified into four levels (as described in Section 10.1), and rehabilitation techniques for mental disorders should be actively and effectively applied to these four levels’ mental health protection.
Principles of Psychological Rehabilitation Treatment
- 1) Medical staff shall strictly follow the documents of the NHC on COVID-19 prevention and control in terms of protection.
- 2) Maintain a good doctor-patient relationship, which is the basis of psychological treatment.
- 3) Stabilize patients’ emotions and enhance their confidence as the primary purpose.
- 4) Rehabilitation therapists should unconditionally accept patients’ abnormal emotions and behaviors and fully respect and understand their psychological feelings.
- 5) Rehabilitation should be patient-centered. Rehabilitation doctors, therapists, and nurses as well as patients’ families should actively participate in the rehabilitation process.
- 6) Focusing on the principle of confidentiality is the requirement of professional quality and the basis of ensuring effective psychological rehabilitation treatment for patients.
- 7) Pay attention to language communication skills and adopt flexible methods to communicate on sensitive issues.
Psychological Rehabilitation Treatment Methods
Psychological Support Therapy
Psychological support is based on psychodynamic theory, using advice and encouragement to treat patients with severe mental impairment. The basic principle is to improve symptoms directly and maintain and rebuild self-esteem, or improve self-confidence, self-function, and adaptive skills. The therapist’s goal is to maintain or enhance the patient’s sense of self-esteem, minimize or prevent the recurrence of symptoms, and maximize the patient’s ability to adapt.
This can be done in the following ways:
- 1) Listening: Understand and master the psychological problems and psychological obstacles of the patient. Let the patient use verbal/non-verbal methods to vent negative emotions, release their painful inner experience, and pay attention to skills, such as using more open-ended questions and fewer closed-ended questions. Respond to the conversation promptly with simple affirmative words and body language.
- 2) Explanations: Use straightforward and easy-to-understand language to explain truthfully to patients. Clearly explain the cause, nature, extent, treatment plan, and outcome of the problems to eliminate the psychological pressure caused by their lack of disease knowledge. For those who are stable, cheerful, and strong-willed the therapist can be honest about the patient’s illness to maximize their enthusiasm to cooperate with the treatment and let them know the impact of a bad personality and mental state on rehabilitation. Methods of nonverbal communication include body posture, body movement, eye contact, facial expression, skin contact, verbal expression, etc.
- 3) Encouragement: Encourage patients according to their specific situation. It is not advisable to encourage them to do things that cannot be done.
- 4) Guarantees: Therapists can try to objectively and clearly state the possible prognosis of the disease in order to arouse the hope of the patient but can only make a limited guarantee based on their condition of the disease and must not easily make promises or unrealistic guarantees. According to the patient’s examination and treatment results, make acceptable assurances to strengthen their confidence in overcoming the disease. If some patients are concerned about whether their disease can be cured, tell them with certainty that, as time goes by, the function will be further restored and the disease can be recovered, but it will take a long time. At the same time, cite some typical, miraculous recoveries and rehabilitation cases to enhance their confidence.
- 5) Guidance: To reduce psychological pressure, give directions and instructions to patients on what to do and how to do it.
- 6) Environment improvement: Improve the living environment that is not conducive to the solution of patients’ psychological problems, especially interpersonal relationships.