Seeking out therapy is an individual choice. There are many reasons why people come to therapy, but you do not have to have serious mental issues to do so. Sometimes it is to address difficulties in an important relationship, or deal with issues with anxiety or depression. Other times it is in response to unexpected changes in one's life such as a divorce or work transition. Many seek the advice of a therapist as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth. Working with a professional can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges including depression, anxiety,addiction, conflict, relationship isues, loss and life changes, stress management, body-image difficulties, general life transitions, and spiritual issues. Therapy is right for anyone who is interested in creating positive change by taking responsibility, creating greater self-awareness, and working towards a better life for themselves and their loved ones.
Do I really need therapy? I can usually handle my problems.
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life. And while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties, it is normal to need extra support sometimes. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand. It can provide long-lasting benefits and support, and provide tools for permanent change.
How can therapy help me?
Good therapy can provide a fresh perspective regardless of how much previous work may have been done. Some of those benefits might include:
- Improving meaningful relationships and providing a deeper sense of connection
- Improving communication skills
- Creating new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Addressing sexuality issues
- Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communication and listening skills
- Negotiating through a difficult or sudden life change
- Support for family members and loved ones
- Gaining a sense of control over an addictive behavior
- Attaining greater self- confidience
What is therapy like?
Every therapy session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. It is standard for therapists to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during therapy sessions. It is common to schedule a series of weekly sessions, where each session lasts around fifty minutes. Therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. There may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. It is important process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions. For therapy to be most effective you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions. People seeking psychotherapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives. Here are some things you can expect out of therapy:
- Compassion, respect and understanding
- Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
- Real strategies for enacting positive change
- Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
Is medication a substitute for therapy?
In some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you. It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, therapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that curb our progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness.
Do you accept insurance? How does insurance work?
To determine if you have mental health coverage, the first thing you should do is check with your insurance carrier. Check your coverage carefully and find the answers to the following questions:
- What are my mental health benefits?
- Is an authorization required from the insurance carrier?
- How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
- How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
- Is approval required from my primary care physician?
Is therapy confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.
However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependant adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
- If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person. The therapist is required to notify the police.
- If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.