What is interpersonal therapy (IPT)?

Interpersonal therapy (IPT) primarily focuses on how relationships affect us, and alternatively, how our mental health issues can affect our relationships. It is a type of therapy that focuses on attachment and communication theories, based on the principle that there is a relationship between the way people interact with others, and their own mental health.

Interpersonal therapy (IPT) supports patients in managing a myriad of difficulties. These can include depression, anxiety, panic disorders, problems in relationships at work or in their social life (interpersonal issues); and also loss either through bereavement or life changes. 

Through IPT, individuals will be able to communicate with others, and address issues in relationships, in a more constructive and healthy manner. 

IPT is approved by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), for the treatment of depression and other mental health conditions.

How does interpersonal therapy (IPT) treatment work?

The emphasis of IPT is on building relationships and improving communication, which can help people understand how they are seen, and how they impact others and create the basis for a more positive and balanced state of mental health. By exploring patterns and experiences in relationships and identifying and understanding problem areas, an individual can determine ways to resolve the difficulties causing them mental distress.

In the case of depression, a person will have been educated about the nature of depression; what it looks like for him or her; and the interpersonal triggers of a depressive episode. The individual will leave therapy with strategies for minimising triggers and resolving future depressive episodes more effectively.

The expected outcomes are reduction or elimination of symptoms, improved interpersonal functioning and a greater understanding of the presenting symptoms and ways to prevent their recurrence. Although IPT treatment focuses on the present, it can also improve an individual’s future through increased awareness of preventive measures and strengthened coping skills. 

Benefits of interpersonal therapy can include:

  • Improved quality of relationships and social functioning
  • Identifying negative patterns
  • Understanding your emotions, and the emotions of others
  • Reduced depression, anxiety and loneliness
  • Improved coping mechanisms
  • Improved self-confidence

Interpersonal therapy (IPT) at Nightingale Hospital London

At Nightingale Hospital, interpersonal therapy can be accessed in an individual or group setting as part of an outpatient, day patient or inpatient programme.

We have experts with a specialism in interpersonal therapy, with a breadth of experience in all mental health conditions to match your individual situation. We establish successful patient/therapist partnerships and achieve the most effective therapeutic relationship due to this extensive expertise. 

Interested in working at Nightingale Hospital?

Are you an accredited therapist with a background in IPT and interested in working at Nightingale Hospital?

Visit our careers page to see if we have any vacancies, or get in touch with our HR team to submit an expression of interest.  


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