Wampold, B.E. et al. (2016)
Psychology Research, 27(1): 14

We still don’t know what makes therapy work, or how therapeutic change happens. From day one, the field of psychotherapy has seen rival groups claim the superiority of one therapy method over another in a “dogma eat dogma” competition for mass adoption. Even today, the search for the “best” treatment method continues. To this end, a series of meta-analyses has suggested that cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is more effective in treating both generalized and specific mental disorders than other forms of therapy. For this reason, the CBT model has been embraced by clinics around the world as the first line of treatment for psychological disorders. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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However, a recent systematic review of earlier meta-analyses asserting the superiority of CBT found that these analyses were flawed due to methodological errors including biased trials, classification mistakes, and the exclusion of countervailing trials. The review concluded that the meta-analytic evidence supporting CBT over other therapies is either nonexistent or weak. This suggests that alternative therapy methods such as supportive therapy, exposure therapy, mindfulness, applied relaxation, social skills training, psychodynamic therapy, and interpersonal psychotherapy may be equally effective in changing behavior and achieving psychological well-being.🧠