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Clinical Vignette

Strength-Based Approaches and Traditional Practices

Andrew is a 17 years old Caucasian male that was referred for treatment by his mother, Martha, due to concerns about changes in his behavior. He is moody, prone to yell at her when she sets limits, his grades are falling from a solid B student, and he seems to only want to play video games all day. Andrew's father is deployed to Iraq and has not been home for almost 2 years. However, occasionally he and Andrew Skype. Martha recently went back to school to earn a Master's in business. The family resides in a rural town outside Houston, Texas.

Strength-based approach usually is a person-centred methodology for caring that supports human commitment to growth and development. Thus, as an approach, strength-based methodology delivers service on functional ability, symptom and quality of life. This approach calls for a distinct way of evaluating people, communities and families with the hope of developing natural capabilities and abilities in clients. It relies on the notion that as clients seek for help, they already possess several abilities and resources, which can be used in improving their situation. According to Michail & Callaghan (2014), "The key concepts of strengths-based approach are: resilience, which shows that humans often survive and thrive, despite the risk factors for various types of problems; empowerment, which underpins the strengths model's view of people as active participants in service delivery rather than diagnostic categories; hope, which is a perceived capability to derive pathways to desired goals; partnership, which is meant to enhance the sense of control over a person's life; and ecological approach, which takes into account the wider social support networks, analyzing both formal and informal sources of support that may be available to the individual, family, group, or community"(p. 1). Implementation of strengths-based approach involves both structural and practice components that are unique to the model. Structural component includes certain aspects like decreased case load, low ratio of supervisors to case managers, and utilization of organised weekly group supervision in ensuring observance of principles associated with the model. Practice components in the model include the use of strengths assessment as well as personal recovery plans created through teamwork between practitioners and service users. Strengths-based methodology offers promising results with regard to psychosocial health, hospitalization, well-being outcomes, family burden, general physical and mental health, as well as psychotic symptoms (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014)

Strength-based approach differs from traditional practices in several ways:

Traditional Practices

Strength-based Approach

An individual is considered in a case where symptoms give way to diagnosis

An individual is considered unique where talents and resources are defined as strengths

Therapy focuses on the problem

Therapy focuses on possibility

Emphasis is on solutions that match problems

Emphasis is on exceptions and past successes (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014)

The practitioner is the expert

Client is considered the expert

According to Oliver (2014) "This means the helper's role is not to tell clients what to do, but listen and support their perspective on their situation" (p.46)

Involves Interventions (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014)

Is a collaborative helper-client relationship

According to Ibrahim, Michail and Callaghan (2014) "Therapists' assessment of service users' symptoms reported that the strengths-based management treatment significantly reduced service users' symptomatology compared to the control group. Moreover, professional assessment of consumers' symptomatology correlated significantly with both self and family reports that used a smaller number of participants, with some receiving the strengths-based case management" (p.6). In the case of Andrew, existential psychology is psychology and psychotherapy tactic for dealing with how every individual recounts the most significant dilemmas in life or the big questions in life. Also, existential psychology focuses on seizing life's feeling and spirit, instead of seeing life as a portion of a systematic system and logical categories, as evident in Andrew's case through obvious alterations in his behavior, mood, and readiness to yell at his mum whenever she sets new limits, as well as his falling grades in school. In the case of Andrew, existential psychology mainly includes philosophical indications through psychological perception that constitute the foundation of existential therapy (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014). In Andrew's case, the focus will be on therapeutic encounter as a setting for change and healing (Krug, 2013).

In the approach adopted in the case of Andrew, strength-based approach is a type of approach that centres on persons with regards to the care and support dedicated to human potentials for growth and development. Strength-based approach controls how people see others and how they go about their daily work for all interactions and actions. Approaches that are strength-based focus on the inborn strengths of individuals, families, groups and organizations, and deploy individual strengths to promote the recovery process and empowerment. As a matter of fact, to concentrate on health and wellness is to accept a resource-based approach with the aim of promoting only the positive. The strength-based approach as practical philosophy distracts one from emphasizing on procedures, knowledge and techniques as major keys to change. This proves that all individuals, families, groups and communities have the power to transform themselves as well as drive a productive change process. Ibrahim, Michail and Callaghan, in 2014, observed that Traditional practices in community services is in this case described as drug treatments and psychotherapy (p.7) where in general, practice means the expression of sub-culture or culture, mostly with regards to conventional and usual practices of a certain cultural or ethnic group. And in this situation, this term can be used to describe an individual who expresses an aspect of any behavior or culture at any point in time (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014). Paying attention to the case of Andrew, the client or patient's role is always no more than repositioning the ailment or the diagnosis holder: their individual decisions or personal characteristics are hardly considered, except in cases where these encourage diagnosis, hence individual factors can make predictions for more of the results than intervention and therapeutic rapport combined. In this condition, clarifying the disparity between traditional practices and a strength-based approach, rather than adopting the former, which lay emphasis on pathology, concentrating on challenges and failures in individuals with mental ailments; According to Wickman and Campbell (2003) "the strength-based approach makes it possible for practitioners to agree to the fact that every person possesses some unique set of abilities and strengths" (p.1) with which he/she can rely on to overcome challenges. According to Ibrahim, Michail and Callaghan (2014), traditional practices concentrate on the problem with the family or the child (p.6). Where in this situation, referring to Andrew, the outcomes of a child welfare system are punitive, and stigmatize the patient in the chosen approach, always leading to resistant and passive responses from patients. Strength-based issue management was put into practice in community mental health centres and has since been adopted in several other social and health service settings (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014).

Concepts in the Treatment of a Client from Interventions

In the case of Andrew, self-therapy is quite useful when it comes to what should be done to raise life healing process. The therapy, which most people adopt for self-treatment, is the most widely used. Only Andrew's cooperation can make the use of self-therapy productive. In this case, Andrew is the focus of everything that happens during therapy. In this case, the client can attain full recovery without personally seeking the services of a psychiatrist. Accepting self-treatment remains the easiest way to handle any mental health issue. Client's involvement and investment in the process, remains the most vital tool in achieving a successful therapy. Clients will often be able to make use of any available approach to the therapy. It equally enables them to pass through a lot of issues that are of interest, without any hitches. In Andrew's treatment views, every psychologist is interested in examining the intelligence of their client by communicating with him/her to ascertain the most important thing to the treatment. Additionally, in every counselling and treatment session, when dealing with information that is required to meet people's objectives, therapy methods are considered useful. Allowing Andrew to employ the same communication tools that would have been used by psychologists to deal with his challenges is also important. According to (Ibrahim, Michail & Callaghan 2014) interventions, when it comes to the delivery model based on strengths in comparison to self-confident community treatment; one professional medic in the strength-based delivery model controls the user of the service and not a team of healthcare providers as is obtainable in the self-confident community treatment.

However, the strength-based service delivery model lays emphasis on goal arrangement by the service consumers as well as helping them locate membership within the community, by liaising other community services while treating Andrew (Shumaker, 2012).

In Andrew's treatment, it is important that the therapist pays attention to the patients with the aim of maintaining the objective perspective with the goal of understanding their experiential world and to be in charge of successful treatment. As a… [END OF PREVIEW]

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