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The psychodynamics of psychosis

  • Brian Martindale and Alison Summers
Summary

This article outlines common psychodynamics in psychosis. We consider psychosis as a response to unbearable aspects of reality and illustrate how psychodynamic concepts of psychological defence can be used as a framework for understanding this. We also present a psychodynamic approach to understanding the development of psychosis, using the stress–vulnerability model, and discuss interpersonal dynamics in psychosis, particularly their relevance to therapeutic relationships and to interactions between patients and their families. The perspectives presented are intended to complement and enrich other frameworks rather than compete with them.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
Dr Alison Summers, Early Intervention Service, Euxton Lodge, 16 Euxton Lane, Chorley PR7 1PS, UK. Email: Alison.summers@lancashirecare.nhs.uk
Footnotes
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In the next issue of Advances, Martindale & Summers will consider how psychodynamic understanding can contribute to a comprehensive formulation to assist recovery.

Declaration of Interest

None.

Footnotes
References
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An asterisk indicates further reading containing more detailed case examples of people with psychosis.
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BJPsych Advances
  • ISSN: 1355-5146
  • EISSN: 1472-1481
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-advances
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The psychodynamics of psychosis

  • Brian Martindale and Alison Summers
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