How are dissociative disorders treated?

Treatment of dissociative disorders usually consists of psychotherapy, with the goal of helping the person integrate different identities, and to gain control over the dissociative process and symptoms. Therapy can be long and difficult, as it involves remembering and learning to deal with past trauma.

Cognitive (that is, dealing with a patient’s conscious intellectual activity) behavioral therapy has been found to be effective. Hypnosis may be another helpful treatment. A newer therapy called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) focuses specifically on the role that disturbing memories play in the development of mental disorders.

No particular medications treat dissociative disorders, although antidepressants may be needed to treat symptoms of depression.

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