Tree House Recovery Colorado

Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT)

Interpersonal Psychotherapy

Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) for addiction treatment in denver colorado.

Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) is an evidence-based therapy that is effective in treating addiction and a wide range of mental health conditions. At Tree House, we use IPT as part of our holistic evidence-based approach to treating addiction. This page will provide an overview of IPT, how it works, and its effectiveness. We will also discuss its unique approach and its benefits over other forms of therapy. If you are struggling with addiction and want to learn more about how our program can help, call (720) 640-0202

What is Interpersonal Psychotherapy?

Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) is a form of psychotherapy that focuses on interpersonal issues and relationships. It was developed in the 1970s by Dr. Gerald Klerman and Dr. Myrna Weissman as a treatment for depression. Since then, IPT has effectively treated various mental health conditions, including addiction. 1

How does IPT work?

Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) Illustration showing improved relationships between friends

IPT is a therapeutic approach that recognizes the significant impact that interpersonal issues and relationships have on mental health. It focuses on four primary areas: grief, role transitions, role disputes, and interpersonal deficits. By addressing these areas through IPT, clients can learn to identify and address the issues that are causing problems in their relationships. This, in turn, can help them reduce symptoms of addiction and improve their overall well-being.

Through IPT, clients develop essential skills to improve their relationships and reduce symptoms of addiction. The therapy helps clients identify and address the underlying issues that contribute to their struggles. By learning to manage grief, navigate role transitions, resolve role disputes, and develop interpersonal skills, clients can improve their relationships and overall mental health. IPT is an effective approach that can lead to significant improvements in clients’ lives, and it is an essential part of the holistic treatment approach at Tree House in Denver, Colorado. Call to learn more (720) 640-0202


Grief is a common issue that can contribute to addiction. IPT helps clients address unresolved grief and learn to cope with loss. This can be particularly important for individuals who have experienced trauma or significant life changes, such as the loss of a loved one.

Role Transitions

Role transitions, such as starting a new job or becoming a parent, can be stressful and contribute to addiction. IPT helps clients adjust to these changes and learn new coping skills. This can be particularly important for individuals who struggle with change or have difficulty adapting to new situations.

Role Disputes

Role disputes occur when there is a disagreement between individuals about the expected roles in their relationship. This could be between parents deciding who should take on certain responsibilities or between friends struggling to navigate the dynamics of their friendship.

Interpersonal Deficits

Interpersonal deficits, such as difficulty making friends or maintaining relationships, can contribute to addiction. IPT helps clients develop social skills and build new relationships. This can be particularly important for individuals who struggle with social anxiety or have difficulty forming and maintaining relationships.

Effectiveness of IPT in Treating Addiction

Studies have shown that IPT is effective in treating addiction, both as a standalone treatment and as part of a comprehensive treatment plan. In one study, researchers found that IPT was a highly effective therapy for patients with alcohol use disorder. The participants reported high satisfaction with the treatment and showed significant improvements in their drinking behavior, depressive symptoms, and interpersonal relationships. These improvements were sustained even after the treatment ended.2

Benefits of IPT over Other Forms of Therapy

IPT has several benefits over other forms of therapy. Unlike some forms of therapy that focus on the past, IPT focuses on the present and future, helping clients develop skills to improve their relationships and reduce addiction symptoms. IPT is also time-limited, typically lasting 12-16 weeks, making it a more feasible option for some clients. Additionally, IPT is an evidence-based therapy, meaning that it has been extensively researched and found to be effective in treating addiction. 3

  1. Improved Relationships: Clients can learn how to develop healthy and fulfilling relationships instead of ones that are shallow and prone to failure.
  2. Coping Skills: IPT can help clients learn how to manage grief and other undesirable emotions in a healthier manner. Clients can learn to calm themselves down when feeling angry and grieve without interfering with their daily life.
  3. Problem-Solving Skills: Through IPT sessions, clients can learn how to solve their problems productively and safely. Clients can develop skills to manage stress, express themselves, and solve problems on their own.


IPT can also be beneficial in treating various mental disorders, including:


  1. Depression: Although depression cannot be cured, IPT can teach clients how to cope with episodes and improve their outlook on life. IPT can also help treat related mental disorders such as anxiety and bipolar disorder, among others. A combination of therapy and other treatment options may be necessary for managing these conditions.
  2. Addiction: Admitting to having an addiction is a significant step towards recovery, and IPT can provide clients with the necessary skills to manage and overcome it. While overcoming addiction is challenging, with therapy and personal determination, clients can succeed in their recovery journey.

How to Get Started with IPT at Tree House Recovery CO:

If you’re struggling with addiction, Interpersonal Psychotherapy (ITP) is an effective modality that can help you reduce drug relapse risk, improve relationships, and develop coping skills needed for a successful recovery. IPT is one of the evidence-based therapies we use in our holistic Tree House approach in Denver. If you’d like to know more about how treehouse can help you call us today. (720) 640-0202

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Cited Sources:

  1. Holmes, S. C., Knoesen, N. P., & Thomas, K. G. (2020). The Future of Psychotherapy in Psychiatry: An Update. Psychiatric Services, 71(8), 818-820.
  2. National Library of Medicine. A Pilot Study of Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) for Alcohol Dependent Women with Co-occurring Major Depression
  3. Regain.US. How You Can Benefit From Interpersonal Therapy