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June 2019

Psychotherapy with persons who are mentally retarded

Journal/Book: Mental Retardation. 1984; 22: 170-175.

Abstract: Contends that greater attention to emotional problems of those who are mentally retarded is needed. Community placements solve problems for the mentally retarded but may create physiological, intrapsychic, and environmental factors that contribute to their emotional disturbance. Successful adjustment to community placement requires support services and awareness of social values within the community. Casework; social group work; pastoral counseling; and art, music, occupational, and recreational therapies have been used by professionals to treat emotionally disturbed mentally retarded clients. General factors that must be included to define the parameters of psychotherapy for the mentally retarded individual are procedures for treatment, social relations between therapist and client, skill of therapist, medication and psychotherapy, and verbal and nonverbal behaviors. Dynamically oriented therapies, behavior therapy, and play therapy have been studied in the treatment of the mentally retarded. It is suggested that psychotherapy outcome be assessed in terms of social validation. (57 ref)

Note: psychotherapy; mentally retarded

Keyword(s): Psychotherapy ; mentally retarded; emotionally disturbed


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