The moment you decide to get yourself treated of any mental condition, the role of a therapist comes into play. It is a therapist who will steer you through the healing process until there is a complete recovery. For a mental patient, they are always an embodiment of care, support, and safety who always look up to them in times of distress.
It is often said in the parleys of mental health treatment that, ‘the philosophy behind the therapy is much less important than the relationship between you and your therapist’. Hence, choosing the right therapist holds the key to your healing process.what you need to know
Types of mental health therapists
Broadly classified, mental health therapists can be clubbed into the following categories:
- Psychologist: A psychologist is one who has a doctoral degree in psychology and possesses a license in clinical psychology.
- Social worker: Licensed clinical social workers (LCSW) who have a master’s degree in social work, apart from additional clinical training, can also double up as mental therapists.
- Marriage and family therapist: The marriage and family therapist or MFT is backed by a master’s degree with a lot of clinical experience.
- Psychiatrist: A psychiatrist is a physician with an M.D or D.O. and specializes in mental health. They are the ones who can also prescribe medicines to patients being, medical doctors.
What you should expect from your therapist
A good therapist is one who makes you feel comfortable and infuses confidence in you. Just by being around you feel a sense of relief that you are in safe hands.
-Experience: Checking the antecedents of your therapist is crucial to your treatment. A therapist with greater exposure and experience will definitely expedite the healing process. Someone who has treated more cases of depression, eating disorders, alcoholism, trauma or PTSD will be a better healer than others.
–Verify licensing: Since you are paying for the mental health services of a skilled professional there is no harm in verifying the license and whether it is compliant with the state regulatory board. Also check for any previous complaints about the therapist you have chosen. This will ensure that you are getting treated by somebody competent and is worth their salt.
-Always go with your gut feelings: Although a therapist’s credentials may sound impeccable, always go with your gut feelings. You will get the vibes as you initiate discussion with your therapist. If you feel so, do not hesitate to replace and seek the help of another one.
All said and done, it is always the relationship with your therapist and how comfortable you feel in his/her company that is going to decide the course of your therapy.