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 Some important information to help you find the right therapist

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Number of posts : 2207
Age : 60
Humor : Once you choose hope, anything’s possible. -Christopher Reeve
Registration date : 2008-11-09

PostSubject: Some important information to help you find the right therapist   Sun 23 Dec 2012, 6:39 pm

Making the decision to enter into therapy is a difficult one. There are many choices out there and it can be hard to try and figure out which one is right for you.
The article below offers some information on how to find the right therapist for you. It is a long article but well worth read.

Going to a mental health provider is something like going to a doctor to deal with physical sickness. In both cases, care most often starts with a talk. You are asked what’s wrong and you try to explain. Honesty and trust are key.

But psychotherapy, or “talk” therapy, and a physical exam are different in an important way. For talk therapy, talking is not just a small part. It’s almost the whole treatment. For a physical problem, your doctor will usually discover the problem with an exam and tests. For a mental health issue, your therapist knows only what you choose to talk about. And the subject is typically something you would not talk about with a stranger.

In short, psychotherapy is personal. So it’s important to find a therapist who is trained to treat your problem, makes you feel comfortable, and is someone you can trust.

How do you find a skilled therapist who is right for you? Here are some steps to take:

Look to trusted sources for referrals. These can be friends, family, your doctor or your company employee assistance program. Asking friends or family members for referrals can be helpful as a search tool, but remember that your personality and needs are not like others. “What worked for your friend may not work for you,” says California-based psychiatrist David Reiss, M.D.

Insurance plans are one more source of referrals. They also tell you whose services are covered. You can search further by going online or looking in the phone book. You need to know about the therapist’s credentials, training and licensing.

Choose only the qualified. Anyone can use the label “psychotherapist.” It is just a general term covering a wide range of licensed professions, from social work to psychiatry. In choosing a therapist, you need to know specifically what that person is licensed and trained to do. Most often, a professional will be one of these:

  • Psychiatrist. This is a medical doctor (M.D. or D.O.) who specializes in care of mental illness. In most states, psychiatrists are the only psychotherapists fully authorized to give drugs. Like all doctors, they must have a state health care license. Also, they can be certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

  • Psychologist. This profession requires a doctorate—Ph.D., Psy.D. or Ed.D.—along with clinical training and state licensing. A national group, the American Board of Professional Psychology, certifies psychologists in 14 specialties.
    Licensed social workers and counselors. These therapists have titles such as licensed clinical social worker (L.C.S.W.), licensed marriage and family therapist (L.M.F.T.) and licensed mental health counselor (L.M.H.C.). These labels can vary from state to state. You may find licensed psychoanalysts and art therapists in your state as well. Most have master’s degrees along with clinical training.

  • Psychiatric nurses. These are registered nurses with extra schooling and training in mental health. They have master’s degrees or doctorates, and have extra certification (such as advanced practice registered nurse [A.P.R.N.]) along with their R.N. (registered nursing depress). One type, the nurse practitioner, works with doctors and can give drugs.

Don’t neglect practical matters.
Psychotherapy can be costly. In choosing a therapist, find out what your health plan covers, and whether the therapist you want is part of the plan’s network. You may find that your plan favors certain types of care, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), depending on the diagnosis. It’s important that your therapist’s methods are a good fit with your plan. Finally, be ready to talk about fees and payment options. This is very important if you will have to pay all or some of the costs out of your own pocket.


If you’re looking for a therapist or have found one and want to learn more about his licensing, training and credentials, online sites can be helpful. A good place to start is the National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology (, the largest credentialing organization for psychologists in the United States.
To see profiles of therapists in a particular area, with their training and specialties, go to the organization’s
“Find a psychologist” site:

The National Institute of Mental Health has advice on finding a therapist, as well as useful links,

For information on a therapist’s license status in your state, go to the directories at these national organizations of licensing boards:

For psychologists: Association of State and Provincial Licensing Boards (
Contact information for state psychology licensing boards is at

For medical doctors (psychiatrists): Federation of State Medical Boards (
To see contact information individual state medical boards, go to

For mental health counselors: American Association of State Counseling Boards (
For individual board contacts, go to

Therapists can also be certified by medical or psychological boards.
You can look up certification data from the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology at
For psychologists, go to the American Board of Professional Psychology certification at

To find a therapist certified in cognitive-behavioral therapy, go to the Academy of Cognitive Therapy at


"I will let yesterday end so that today can begin."
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PostSubject: Re: Some important information to help you find the right therapist   Tue 15 Jan 2013, 5:26 am

This is some good info Dee! Wish I had it before I began my 4 months struggle to find the right terapist! LOL! Maybe if I did then I wouldn't have struggled so much to find my therapist Debbie!

Thank you for sharing this Dee!

I hope this helps some of the new members or potentially new members. People who are just reading and have started recovery, or people who haven't started recovery and just read info on our forum! I hope it helps them! When they do decide to go into recovery, find the provider and therapist that is right for them!

I know this would have helped me in the weeks prior t my recovery or even a week or two into my recovery! That was such a mess! Lol. I switched between 4 providers and 5 therapists. It was just horrible!
The one place required you to see their therapist, I had two choices and I was not comfortable with either one of them! He seemed to be rushing me out of there, watching the clock and not really listening to me, and she seemed to judge me because of the large amounts of opiates I was on before starting Suboxone. Another place the doctor and the therapist was all in one session. So the doctor was also the therapist. I didn't mind talking to her, but they were only half hour appointments and I didn't feel like I was getting the most out of my recovery, therapy wise. Plus this place was a 2 hour drive and I had an outrageous copay for the office calls.
The last place I went to before finding my perfect recovery center required me to go to group sessions every day of the week. A few times a week I can handle but every day of the week, when I have a family to take care of.. No way!

Finally I found EDM and my doctor is wonderful and most importantly I am COMFORTABLE talking to my therapist!!

I did it again, I rambled on and on about nothing! Lol why do I do that? Hm.

Much love I love you -Jasmine
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