How Can Psychotherapy Help Me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in psychotherapy. Psychotherapy can provide support, problem solving skills and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress, anxiety and depression. Many people also find that psychotherapy can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues and the hassles of daily life. Psychotherapy can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or can head you towards a solution. The benefits you obtain from psychotherapy depend on how well you use the process and how well you put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from psychotherapy include:
- Obtaining a better understanding of yourself, your life goals and values
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek psychotherapy
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communication and listening skills
- Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
- Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
- Improving self esteem and boosting self confidence
Is Psychotherapy Right for Me?
The initial session is to assess your needs and clarify if we have the skills to be useful to you. Most importantly the first session gives you a chance to meet our staff, see the office, and clarify how you feel talking about your issues. The first session is a mutually exploratory interview.
Continuing psychotherapy after the initial session is an individual choice. There are many reasons why people decide to continue psychotherapy. Sometimes it is to deal with long standing psychological issues or problems with anxiety or depression. Other times it is in response to unexpected changes in one's life such as a divorce or work transitions. Many seek psychotherapy as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth. Working with a psychotherapist can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges. At a minimum psychotherapy can provide a safe place to ventilate the stressful and often internalized feelings related to being a human being. Psychotherapy is right for anyone who is interested in getting the most out of their life by taking responsibility, creating greater self awareness and working towards change in their lives.
Most people continue psychotherapy because they feel comfortable talking with their psychotherapist.
Do I Really Need Psychotherapy?
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you have faced, there is nothing wrong with seeking extra support when you need it. In fact, psychotherapy is for people who have enough self awareness to realize they need a helping hand. The decision to consider psychotherapy is a strength in itself. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you are in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking aid. Psychotherapy can provide long lasting benefits and can give you the tools you need to avoid triggers from past painful events. It can also help you overcome whatever challenges you face in the future.
What Is Psychotherapy Like?
Every session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. It is standard for psychotherapists to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during therapy sessions. Psychotherapy is most effective if it is done on a weekly basis. Less than a weekly frequency tends to reduce the effectiveness of the sessions. The sessions last 45-50 minutes with group psychotherapy being 90 minute sessions. Psychotherapy 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 to consider what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions.
For psychotherapy 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. An important principle to remember is that we are in life as we are in therapy and we are in therapy as we are in life.
Here are some benefits you can expect from psychotherapy:
- 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 Psychotherapy?
In many cases a combination of medication and psychotherapy is the most effective action. For others either medication only or psychotherapy only is the best plan. Ongoing consultation with your prescribing medical doctor is the best plan regarding taking medication. It is well established that the long term solutions to emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Psychotherapy is different from medication management appointments with your doctor. Instead of treating the symptoms only, psychotherapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that limit our progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well being with an integrative and subjective approach that considers both medication and psychotherapy.
Do you accept insurance? How does insurance work?
To determine if you have insurance 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?
- What is the copay amount for each psychotherapy session?
- How many sessions does my plan cover per year?
- Does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
- Is pre certification required from my primary care physician?
- Is pre certification required at all?
Is Psychotherapy Confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and their psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.
However, there are some exceptions required to this rule which are required by law. Those exceptions include:
- If child abuse or adult elder abuse is known or suspected
- If an individual is homicidal
- If an individual is suicidal
- If an individual is threatening to harm a family member or an acquaintance
- With the above situations a psychotherapist is required by law to report the above behaviors to the appropriate authorities