Do You Need Therapy?
…..and other frequently asked questions
Are you thinking about booking an appointment with a psychologist, but aren’t sure if it’s right for you? Are certain issues causing problems in your life and you’re stuck and aren’t sure how to make the necessary changes on your own? With the help of a psychologist you can learn how to make the changes that are necessary to achieve greater life satisfaction and happier relationships.
There are many reasons why people will book an appointment with a psychologist.
Psychotherapy may be helpful to you when:
- You feel overwhelmed by life problems
- You don’t know how to manage a major life decision
- You are having relationship problems
- You are having difficulty coping with a serious illness in yourself, or in a family member or friend
- Your job is too stressful and you can’t handle it anymore
- You don’t know what to do, or where to turn for help
Answers to some of the most frequent questions people ask when calling to book an appointment for the first time.
Psychologists see a wide variety of people and can treat many kinds of problems. Some people may come to see a psychologist because they have been experiencing depression, or anxiety. Others may be overwhelmed with stress in their lives, or are unable to manage their anger. And there are those who have short-term problems that they need help dealing with, such as grieving the death of a family member, or relocation to a new city, starting a new job or planning long term goals.
Psychologists are trained in the administration,scoring and interpretation of psychological tests. These tests can be used to assess: Intellectual ability (IQ), Cognitive functioning, Neuropsychological Problems, Personality Traits, Pathological Psychological Problems, Risk Assessment, Life Stress Issues and Vocational Aptitude and Preference.
There are many different kinds of psychologists including:
- Clinical Psychologists
- Counselling Psychologists
- Educational Psychologists
- Occupational Psychologists
- Forensic Psychologists
- Research and Teaching Psychologists
problems. They provide assessment, counselling and/or psychotherapy without the use of medication. In B.C psychologists are licensed by the College of Psychologists of British Columbia, whose role is to regulate the practice of psychology in the best interests of the public.
Psychiatrists work within a medical framework and will have trained as a doctor first and then specialized in Psychiatry. Only Psychiatrists and Medical Doctors can prescribe medication. Psychiatrists are regulated by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia.Both Psychologists and Psychiatrists are designated professionals regulated by the HealthProfessions Act
Counsellors Individuals who refer to themselves as “counsellors” or provide “counselling” are not to be confused with psychologists who offer counselling, psychotherapy or other therapy services. Anyone regardless of training can refer to himself or herself as a “counsellor”. So “Buyer beware”.
When we first opened the doors to our practice, it was not unusual for a potential client to express; the belief that you only consulted a psychologist if you were “crazy”! Although psychologists can and do work with people who have serious mental health disorders there are many other reasons to consult a psychologist. e.g. You’re changing jobs or maybe looking for work – Retiring, moving house, adapting to illness, arguing with your partner, separating, having kids, leaving home or caring for an elderly relative. Each one of us has to face daunting problems at some time in their lives. The challenge is how we each adapt to change. If certain issues have been causing problems in your life and you aren’t sure how to make the necessary changes, therapy can help.
Help from a psychologist just might be the most effective thing that you can do for yourself and those who love you. It is important during difficult times to seek professional help. Whilst your family and friends can be a great support, because they are emotionally attached to you they are not always best able to offer the most subjective solutions. Dealing with your problems with the help of a psychologist can help you learn how to challenge negative thinking and how to focus on more productive patterns of behaviour. Almost anyone with a disorder/dysfunction can benefit from seeking professional help from a therapist.
Trust your instincts: recognize that your needs are important and choose the person who you feel will be supportive and responsive to your needs.
Empathy, compassion, wisdom and character: these are all important attributes for a psychologist to possess. Good professional training is essential.
Asking the right questions will help you to determine if it is a good match for you
The foundation of good therapy and its effectiveness will depend on the relationship that you and your psychologist build together. At Tri-City Psychology Services we endeavor from your very first telephone call to answer your questions. You’ll discover our registered psychologists are focused on working with you, not on judging you for your thoughts, feelings, or actions.
If you have never been to see a psychologist before you will probably wondering what to expect, what your first meeting will be like. Each client/psychologist relationship is unique, however your experience in therapy will be influenced by several factors.
- The practice modality that the therapist you choose utilizes, e.g. cognitive behavioural,psycho-dynamic, behavioural.
- Your attitude to therapy
- Your ability to be open with the therapist
During this first session the psychologist will try to get a sense of the difficulties that brought you to see him/her. You, the client will have two jobs in the first session. First, you need to tell the psychologist about the difficulties you are having. Secondly, it is very important that you use this first meeting to check out the psychologist to see if she/he is someone you will feel comfortable working with. Therapy is a collaborative effort. You and your psychologist will work together to identify what your goals are, and what is most important to you. Are you looking for a small change in a few things or a big change in many things. With that knowledge future therapy can be tailored to suit your individual needs.
Psychologists most often use evidence based treatments (often referred to as psychotherapy or talk therapy) to help people improve their lives. The person carrying out the treatment is the therapist the person being seen is usually referred to as the client. There are many different types of therapeutic approaches. What they have in common is that they are all treatments based on talking to another person. There are many different styles of therapy, but the psychologist will choose the type that best addresses a clients particular problem, and which is best suited to the particular clients individual character.
- Understand the behaviours, emotions, and ideas that contribute your situation or illness.
- To identify the life problems or events, such as a job loss or a divorce, a major illness, a death in the family, so that you can explore which aspects of those problems you may be able to solveor improve.
- To develop resilience, learn skills and coping techniques and achieve greater satisfaction in life
Individual insurance plans can vary. We recommend that you contact your insurance provider to discuss what benefits are provided and to establish how much coverage you have and if the plan accepts direct billing.
Clients whose insured benefit plan does not accept direct billing are required to pay the session fee at the time they attend.
The methods of payment we accept include Visa, Master Card, American Express, Interac and cash. Receipts are issued for you to submit to your insurer for reimbursement or to apply to your medical expenses with your tax return.
Are you afraid that we won’t be able to solve your problem?
Do you remember those join the dot puzzles you used to do when you were a child? Where you learned how to join dot 1 to dot 2 until all the numbers were connected and you ended up with a picture. Most people, believe that the change process has to be complicated. You are so immersed in your problem you miss the bigger picture. Our psychologists understand your pain. In therapy they will help you connect the dots, so that you can learn to manage your difficulties and transform your life.
Stuff happens, and many things are out of ‘our control’. You know that you can’t do it alone. We will help you to reduce the anger, frustration, disappointments and sadness from the events in your life that are beyond your control; identify what you can control, script goals for you that promote well-being and are both realistic and achievable.
Are you afraid that therapy will cost too much and take too long?
Its true, therapy can be costly, not only in terms of money but also in the investment of your time and effort. How long this takes and how much it will cost depends on many things – How complex and entrenched your situation is, and how ready and willing you are to change or modify your behaviors.
Are you afraid that you won’t be able to change?
For those of you who are always waiting until the time is right, there will always be a reason to delay.
It’s too hard.
I just can’t do it.
I’m scared because I don’t know what to expect……
Yes it can be scary, change isn’t always easy and that may put you off. If it was so easy we wouldn’t see so many struggling marriages, so many depressed and anxious people. Much depends on the effort you are prepared to put in. Are you worried that you won’t “get it right” the first time? Do you hold yourself back from trying or even thinking about change, because the idea of failure just won’t let you move forward? You have to make mistakes, it means you are growing and moving forward. Any new direction, even one that will ultimately be successful, is going to involve some effort and also some failure. Our psychologists will help you with the framework, inspiration and support. Although we don’t promise that change will be easy, we will try to help make it easier for you to to achieve.
When you learn to ask the right questions you find that with practice, it is possible to challenge and change yourself or situation, whether you are struggling with debilitating depression or an unhappy marriage. And that despite the risk of failure it is possible to fulfill your desire for a better life and happier relationships.