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No substitute for psychotherapy

August 11, 2008

Re "Psychotherapy increasingly takes a back seat to pills, study finds," Aug. 5

The headline on the article is wholly misleading. It implies that psychotherapy in general is being replaced by medication.

As a psychologist with a busy private practice, I can vouch that this couldn't be further from the truth. The real headline should be "Psychiatrists provide less psychotherapy due to lower compensation rates."

Research has substantiated that sometimes, under certain conditions, medication does work. And I recommend it when necessary. But in general, for long-term gains, there is no substitute for psychotherapy.

Many of my clients have previously been on medications (sometimes for years) and have often found that medications do not provide the answers necessary to alleviating stress, changing negative thoughts, feelings, behaviors and moving toward living a life of joy.

Dan Litov

Los Angeles

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