FREQUENTLY asked questions about counseling and mental Health
What type of problems do people typically use COUNSELING services for?
It is a common misconception to think that only seriously ill or "crazy" people need counseling help. Studies show that over eighty percent of people can benefit from counseling at some time in their lives. In other words, you should feel normal if you are considering getting a little extra help. People come to counseling when they are grappling with challenges like depression, anxiety, relationship issues, post-traumatic stress, bereavement, substance abuse, or eating and body image issues, to name a few. They might notice that they are having a harder time studying, eating, or sleeping, or they are otherwise just not feeling able to meet their day-to-day obligations. If you aren't exactly sure what you're going through right now, but you just feel that you aren't functioning or feeling the way that you want to, then that's common too. We invite you to visit with us, and together we can sort out what's going on and find a meaningful path to healing.
What happens in counseling?
Generally, you will meet with your counselor for an hour each week. At these visits, you will discuss any concerns you are having, and you will often be asked to provide some historical details of your life. Though talking about the past can help in understanding the present, we will spend the majority of time discussing the here-and-now of your life. It is important to note that counseling is a collaborative effort between you and your counselor. Together, we will explore the thoughts, emotions, behaviors, and life situations that are causing you stress. With your values guiding the way, we will identify constructive ways for you to move forward in finding improved mental health.
Will my health insurance cover counseling?
At Salt Lake City Mental health, we accept a variety of providers to ensure that you receive the help you need.
The following is a list of insurances that we currently accept:
The following is a list of insurances that we currently accept:
WHAT IF I DON'T HAVE INSURANCE?
We offer a sliding scale (cash discount) to those who do not have insurance. We accept all major credit cards.Cash and check are also welcome.
Will I need to take medications?
Only if you want to. Many psychological problems can be successfully treated without the use of medications. If you feel, though, that medication should be considered as a adjunct to counseling, your counselor will discuss referral options with you. You will need to see a physician (such as your Primary Care Provider, a Psychiatrist, or a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner) to be prescribed any medications. It is important to let your counselor know about any medications you have already been prescribed.
How do I find the COUNSELOR that's right for me?
The most important questions to ask yourself are: How do I feel about this person? Do I feel comfortable? Do they seem empathetic? Do I trust them? Naturally, you may feel somewhat nervous in the beginning stages of therapy, but that feeling should eventually give way to a comfortable working relationship. Pay attention to your feelings. If you feel uncomfortable in session, bring it up to the therapist. If such feelings persists, we will help you find someone with whom you feel more at ease. One size does not fit all, and sometimes it takes “trying on” a few therapists to find the right fit.
Is everything I say confidential?
All members of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) subscribe to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice which require counselors to protect the confidentiality of their communications with clients. Most state licensure laws also protect client confidentiality. Any disclosure of information will be made with your full written, informed consent and will be limited to a specific period of time.
How do I get the most out of our sessions?
You can maximize the progress you make in counseling by being actively involved in the work you and your counselor are doing. Some suggestions include:
- Be as honest and open as possible with your counselor. This can be hard to do, but take comfort knowing that your counselor will listen with empathy rather than shock or judgement, whatever you may share.
- Be on time and try not to miss any of your scheduled meetings. Consistency is important when undergoing counseling.
- Between sessions, make time to think about the things you have discussed with your counselor. Journaling about topics discussed can be helpful.
- Invest in following through on any homework assignments, readings, or books your counselor has suggested for you.
How do I know when i no longer need counseling?
Give therapy a chance. Consider the first couple of months as a trial period. It usually takes at least that long to experience movement, depending on your problems and issues. Progress is usually inhibited by frequently changing from one counselor to another. In considering when to discontinue treatment, ask yourself whether the problems that caused you to seek counseling have been resolved and whether any additional problems or issues have come to your attention that you may wish to resolve. Also consider the advice of your counselor; a frank discussion of the advisability of terminating treatment is usually useful. Remember that no decision about counseling or psychotherapy is irrevocable. While you may seek advice from others, decisions regarding when to begin and end treatment which counselor to choose are yours alone.
What SHOULD I do if I think a friend or family MEMBER needs To see a COUNSELOR?
It can be very difficult when someone you care about is in pain. You might find yourself feeling helpless, frightened, frustrated or angry. It is perhaps impossible to make a person seek help if they don’t want to or don’t feel they need it, and counseling with an unwilling client is usually not very effective. Here are some things you might offer as a friend:
- Let them know that you are concerned. Suggest that he or she make an appointment with a counselor to see if we can be of help. Try to phrase the communication using “I’ language, rather than “you” language. For example, “I care about you and I am sad to see you are hurting” rather than “You are in trouble and need help.”
- Offer to sit with them while he/she makes an appointment.
- Offer to accompany them to their first appointment, and either wait in the waiting area or go to the appointment with him/her.
- Call or come into the counseling center yourself, and talk with a counselor regarding your concerns for them. You will not need to tell the counselor their name, and you do not necessarily even need to let them know you came in. The counselor may be able to offer you suggestions about how to interact more effectively with them, as well as to manage your own feelings about the situation.
- Surf the web or a bookstore for information about their problem(s), and pass along to them any helpful findings.
"It's less about becoming a better person, and more of being better, as a person."-J.R. Rim