The therapeutic alliance is the collaborative relationship between a therapist and patient. It focuses on creating a strong bond between the patient and healthcare practitioner by connecting in a genuine manner. At the heart of therapeutic alliance is language and communication. Proper language at the right time can reduce a patient’s fears and automatically ameliorate the sensitivity in the body’s alarm system to foster an environment of healing. In order to “win” in a patient-client interaction, a strong therapeutic alliance must be formed.
“The therapeutic alliance is the collaborative relationship between a therapist and patient.”
Just as the appropriate language can create a positive experience, aggressive language or behavior can diminish therapeutic alliance. From the moment you interact with your patients, you start a conversation with them. This conversation begins well before the treatment table. It happens through a mixture of verbal and nonverbal language. Your posture, demeanor, nonverbal facial expressions and any small talk all shape the relationship that you develop during that session. It’s these subtle forms of connection that may be the most important in building trust and creating a therapeutic alliance.
There are many ways to quickly build therapeutic alliances. Mastering language is one of them!