What is psychotherapy like?
Psychotherapy is an opportunity to learn about yourself and then make a conscious effort to accept who you are and figure out what changes are possible. Sometimes examining and making changes to thought patterns or behaviors can be enough. Sometimes people find that they can benefit from finding practical ways to cope, such as learning how to become more assertive in relationships, or discovering ways to manage difficult emotions.
Sometimes issues are deeply rooted in unresolved pain from the past, and working through those issues can take longer. You do not necessarily have to talk about your past, but you may find at some point that not addressing something in your past is getting in the way of moving forward.
Psychotherapy lasts as long as it is needed. This may be one or two sessions, or it may be twenty or more. We will work together to measure progress and find an appropriate time to end treatment.
What is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor?
LMHCs have completed a 60 credit Master’s Degree in Counseling as well as a minimum of 2000 hours of practical experience working with clients, and must pass a licensing exam (The National Mental Health Counselor’s Exam) before they are licensed by the state of Rhode Island. This prepares them to perform assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of many mental health issues, including anxiety and depression, difficulty adjusting to life changes or stressors, phobias, substance abuse, and reactions to trauma. In addition, counselors can work with people on goals, relationship issues, making difficult decisions, and help people successfully navigate through life changes at all stages of development.
Counselors operate primarily from a wellness perspective and are also trained to work within the medical model of symptom treatment. Counselors also have a strong belief in educating and empowering clients. However, counselors vary individually in their approaches and areas of specialization.
Counselors will often work with other providers who specialize in psychological testing or medication management if their clients require these services.
What is EMDR?
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing is a specialized technique which seems to speed healing from trauma by focusing on troubling memories and targeting the negative self-concept which often accompanies them.
Part of the treatment involves bilateral stimulation of the body, often done by moving the eyes back and forth rapidly, which is theorized to rebuild neural pathways in a way similar to REM sleep. EMDR has been approved by the Veteran’s Administration as a treatment for PTSD, but is also applicable for so-called “small-t” traumas such as being fired from a job, or getting divorced, which can leave you feeling overwhelmed or finding it difficult to cope.
Find more information on EMDR here: www.emdria.org
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