Client Centered Therapy

What is Client Centered Therapy?

Addictions such as alcoholism and eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia are treated with medical and psychological therapies so that healing is long-term and comprehensive. One effective therapy used to fight eating disorders in eating disorder residential programs and depression in depression treatment facilities is called client centered therapy.

Client-centered, or person-centered, therapy was established by Carl Rogers in 1940 as an alternative to the existing orientations that relied on guidance or interpretation. Through this non-directive approach to therapy a therapist is able to relay back to the patient what they have expressed so that the patient can identify the changes they would like to make in life. Rogers provided evidence that this process of client self-discovery and actualization occurred in response to the therapist supplying a consistent empathic understanding of the client’s experience, based on the attitude of acceptance and respect. This self-discovery has proven to be especially beneficial to those in eating disorder treatment clinics, trauma recovery, treatment for alcoholism and cocaine rehab.

This was later refined into Rogers defining the therapeutic qualities of “empathy, congruence, and unconditional positive regard”. These qualities have become the basis of today’s therapeutic approaches. Client-Centered Therapy is centered upon the expansion of self-awareness, the enhancement of self-esteem, and greater self-reliance. Some of the positive outcomes for clients include a greater sense of freedom, spontaneity, and openness.

Client-Centered Therapy has proven to be particularly useful when treating dual diagnosis or low self-esteem in depression treatment facilities, addictions in drug and alcohol rehab centers, and disorders in eating disorder treatment clinics. By allowing the individual to connect with his/her inner-self, one is better equipped to transcend the limitations of addictions and other compulsions.

Who Can Benefit From Client Centered Therapy?

This type of therapy benefits people with the following conditions:

  • Depression (beneficial to people enrolled in depression treatment facilities)
  • Poor relationships
  • Schizophrenia
  • Anxiety
  • Substance abuse (for anyone enrolled in a treatment for drug abuse center)
  • Personality disorders
  • Feelings of panic
  • Stress
  • Eating disorders (helpful to anyone seeking bulimia help, anorexia treatment or assistance for binge eating)
  • Phobias

Benefits of Client Centered Therapy

Benefits of client centered therapy include:

  • Greater ability to trust oneself
  • Decrease in anxiety and feelings of panic
  • Healthier relationships
  • Open to new ideas and experiences
  • Depression recovery
  • Increased self-esteem
  • Ability to express personal feelings and opinions
  • Lessened guilt over past mistakes
  • Decreased feelings of stress
  • Overall healthy sense of change


This blog is for informational purposes only and should not be a substitute for medical advice. We understand that everyone’s situation is unique, and this content is to provide an overall understanding of substance use disorders. These disorders are very complex, and this post does not take into account the unique circumstances for every individual. For specific questions about your health needs or that of a loved one, seek the help of a healthcare professional.