- 1. What happens in counseling or psychotherapy?
- 2. What do Clinical Psychologists do?
- 3. Does a psychologist also provide medicines?
- 4. What is the difference between a Psychiatrist and a Psychologist?
- 5. How do I decide whether I need therapy/counseling or not?
- - We notice ourselves repetitively acting/behaving/feeling in a particular pattern which generally lands us in trouble
- - We observe changes in our mood and mental state for a prolonged period of time
- - We find ourselves thinking and worrying about things more than what is required
- - We are not able to perform our daily routines and/or unable to keep up with our work/school related tasks
- - We identify being emotionally vulnerable and getting upset over trivial matters
- - We notice being stuck or being unable to bounce back at life despite superficially things seem sorted out
- 6. How long will I have to have therapy/counseling sessions?
- 7. What if I feel that the therapy/therapist isn’t helping?
- 8. Would seeking help mean that I am psychologically ill?
- 9. Will I get dependent on my therapist?
- 10. What is psychological testing?
- 11. Will my information be kept confidential?
- 12. Why am I required to pay in advance for the sessions?
Counseling or Psychotherapy is a form of intervention based on extensively used theories, models and principles of Psychology (how humans think, feel and behave). It is a process in which you and your counselor/therapist would work together towards indentifying and understanding your current concerns, setting goals for therapy and resolution of your difficulties. You and your therapist/counselor would be spend time on discussing, exploring and reflecting on things as well as would be strategizing/planning certain aspects and learning new behaviours. Thus, any kind of therapy or counseling would require multiple sessions.
Being one of the mental health professionals, Clinical Psychologists are trained in providing psychotherapy and conducting psychological assessments.They are well-equipped with providing psychological treatment to those diagnosed with psychological disorders to help ameliorate the symptoms and associated distress while at the same time improving the general mental health and well-being. They also have the expertise to work with individuals who do not have a clinical diagnosis per se but are experiencing some ups and downs in their lives. They are extensively trained in conducting psychological assessments which are vital tools for evaluating a person’s mental state.
No, a Psychologist is the one who holds a minimum of a post-graduate degree (M.A. or M.Sc.) and is trained in providing psychotherapy and psychological testing. Medicines are and can only be prescribed by Psychiatrists.
Psychiatrists are the ones who can prescribe medicines to manage or eliminate your symptoms. A psychiatrist holds a MBBS and MD Psychiatry degree. Psychologists provide psychological interventions to help reduce the distress experienced, adapt to situations, learn new behaviours and manage your emotions.
Given the stigma and taboo around mental health concerns in our society, it can be extremely tough and overwhelming to recognize and accept that one needs an external psychological support. Acknowledging the difficulty in coping with a particular situation or managing one’s own emotions is easily frowned upon and/or ignored by most around us. Hence, at such times of distress, we would all turn to our pre-existing sources of support such as family, friends and even internet. Quite often we are able to find solutions to our problems but there can be times wherein we find it difficult to overcome certain difficulties. There can be times wherein:
As the nature of concerns to be addressed, the ongoing circumstances and the individual personality characteristics differ from person to person, it is highly impossible to commit to a fixed time frame or number sessions that might be required. Also, the intensity of the issues to be addressed, the number of goals set and the implementation of therapeutic techniques in real life situations would determine the course and duration of your treatment.
It is possible that despite your therapists’ expertise and commitment, you might feel that the form of therapy being used isn’t helping you or that you are not able to getting along well with your therapist. It is completely alright to have such feelings. In such a case, you can talk openly with your therapist about such concerns and address them in your sessions. If required, your therapist could also provide you referrals to other mental health professionals who might be able to help you better.
The lack of knowledge and understanding regarding mental health concerns has lead to the false but all pervading notions about psychotherapy or counseling. It is a common belief held in our society that if one is seeking help then one might be a ‘psycho’ or ‘mad’.
However, in reality, requiring therapy or counseling means that you are currently in a situation which is stressful, emotionally overwhelming or difficult to cope with and that you need help and support from a trained, non-judgmental mental health expert.
It is very common to feel that being in therapy would mean that you become dependent on your therapist. On the contrary though that is exactly opposite to what therapy aims to do. The primary goal of any therapy or counseling is to help the individual become fully independent in dealing with difficulties and overcoming vulnerabilities.
Psychological tests help determine the nature and severity of problem, and identify personal characteristics and tendencies. They are the tools used to measure various psychological attributes in a well established, scientific way and serve various purposes such as identifying the current mental status, arrive at a diagnosis or guide the treatment.
While abiding to ethical principles and guidelines prescribed for psychological services, we respect each individual’s right to privacy and confidentiality. We recognize that the information shared during the sessions is privileged information and we ensure its safety. However, the law dictates that we need to breach this right to confidentiality in case we have a reason to believe that there is a possibility of harm to self or others or in case of the persons involvement in any legal litigation wherein the court orders for the information to be shared.
Our psychologists are dedicated to helping their clients and being available for them. Paying for sessions in advance helps both you and your therapist to commit to therapy. When you pay in advance it helps us be sure that would be coming in for the session as per the schedule and we can plan for the session in advance.