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Therapy FAQ: what to know when you're thinking of getting started

Q1: What is mental health therapy and why do I need it?

Mental health therapy, also known as counseling or talk therapy, is a type of treatment that involves talking with a trained professional about your feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. The goal of therapy is to help you better understand and manage your mental health concerns, improve your coping skills, and enhance your overall well-being. You may need therapy if you are dealing with stress, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, or any other emotional challenges that affect your daily life. It's essential to remember that asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Q2: What should I expect during my first therapy session?

The first therapy session usually involves getting to know your therapist and feeling comfortable in the new environment. You might be asked about your reasons for seeking therapy, a little about your background, and what you hope to achieve from the sessions. It's an opportunity to express your feelings, share your concerns, and ask any questions you may have. Don't worry if you feel nervous at first – it's normal. Remember, your therapist is there to support and guide you throughout the process.

Q3: How long will I need to attend therapy sessions?

The duration of your therapy sessions and the total number of sessions needed will depend on several factors, including the complexity of your issues, your personal goals, and the type of therapy you're receiving. Some people find relief in just a few sessions, while others may require more extensive treatment. Your therapist will work with you to create a treatment plan that's tailored to your specific needs. Keep in mind that therapy is not a one-size-fits-all solution, and it's important to be patient and consistent with the process.

Q4: Is therapy confidential?

Absolutely. Confidentiality is a crucial aspect of mental health therapy. Everything discussed during the sessions is kept private between you and your therapist, unless you give explicit permission to share information with someone else (like a parent, teacher, or doctor). There are also some exceptions, like when a therapist suspects abuse or if you pose an immediate threat to yourself or someone else. But generally, you can trust that your therapist will maintain confidentiality and respect your privacy.

Q5: Will my partner, parents or friends know about my therapy sessions?

Typically, the details of your therapy sessions are not shared with your parents or friends unless you choose to disclose that information yourself. However, if you're a minor (under 18 years old), your parents or legal guardians might be involved in your treatment process or at least informed about your therapy. This is to ensure your safety and provide support. But remember, what you discuss during therapy remains confidential, even if your parents or friends know that you're attending sessions. In some cases it may be extremely helpful to share with tyour partner or friends what you have been learning in therapy.

Q6: Can therapy really help me, or is it just 'talking'?

Yes, therapy can be incredibly helpful in managing your mental health and improving your overall well-being. It's more than just 'talking.' A professional therapist can provide you with effective tools, strategies, and support to help you cope with difficult situations and emotions. Research has consistently shown that therapy can lead to positive changes in behavior, improved emotional regulation, and increased self-awareness. With an open mind and active participation, you can benefit significantly from the therapy process.

Important note to consider

When it comes to mental health therapy, finding the right therapist can make a significant difference in your treatment outcome. Here are some tips to help you find the right therapist for you:

- Check your coverage or recommendations from your insurance company (if applicable)

- Check online directories, Psychology Today, or local groups.

- Consider the type of therapy you're interested in (like CBT, DBT, or family therapy).

- Learn more about the therapist you're interested in; credentials, specialties, focus.

- Consider factors like age, gender, and cultural background when selecting a therapist. - Schedule a consultation or initial session to see if you feel comfortable with the therapist and their approach. Remember, finding the right therapist might take some time, but it's crucial for your comfort, trust, and overall success in therapy. Don't be afraid to consult with different therapists until you find the one that works best for you.

All of the practitioners at MST offer a complimentary phone consultation to discuss your situation prior to having a paid appointment :) Reach out to us today. 705-717-2107 @mainstreamtherapy

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