Who’s who? Or what help to seek and when III. (Psychotherapist)

When dealing with psychological problems, you can choose to have therapy with a psychotherapist. In this case, it is very important to choose the right psychotherapist. In this article, we have therefore prepared basic questions to ask yourself before approaching a psychotherapist.

Who can work as a psychotherapist?

  • In Europe, there is currently a legal and professional anchor on who can or cannot perform psychotherapy.
  • However, now it is still the case that a person becomes a therapist or psychotherapist after completing psychotherapy training, which is usually followed by up to 5 years of training on how to practically help people with and without mental illness. 
  • Additional training may be shorter training of less than 5 years in, for example, art therapy, dramatherapy, group psychotherapy, etc.

Can only a psychologist or psychiatrist do the work of a psychotherapist?

  • Psychotherapeutic training can be completed by a trained psychologist or psychiatrist, but also, for example, by a social worker, an educator or a person from other professions. The criteria for admission to psychotherapeutic training are individual according to the schools and the training itself

What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy?

  • It is a longer term care as opposed to counselling. It is suitable for people with mental health problems ranging from anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, addictions, eating disorders or personality disorders, but also for deeper self-knowledge, self-development and working on oneself without mental illness. 

Are there different types of psychotherapy?

  • Psychotherapeutic training according to a particular strand (or school of psychotherapy) that it represents approaches clients or patients in a slightly different way. 
  • Examples of psychotherapeutic directions/schools include cognitive behavioral psychotherapy, psychodynamic psychotherapy, gestalt psychotherapy, family therapy, existential and logo therapy, body-centered therapy 

Is psychotherapy covered by insurance or how much does psychotherapy cost?

  • Psychotherapy can be encountered both in the health care system, where it is covered by insurance, and in private practice, where it is paid for by the client or the patient
  • The price for therapy varies mostly according to the institution (private clinics, centres, individuals in their own practice) that provides it, the form in which it is provided (online, in person, individual, group) through the length of education or experience of the psychotherapist.
  • With psychotherapy, it is certainly not true that lower price is better, but at the same time a higher price does not guarantee that the psychotherapist will be the right one to deal specifically with your difficulties. 

What to look out for when choosing a psychotherapist?

  • So when choosing a therapist it is advisable to find out what training they have had, whether they are accredited, sometimes therapists can have more than one training and course, as well as what their previous training has been and how many years they have been in practice.

Whichever psychotherapist you choose, you have already taken the most important step. Even with the best of intentions, sometimes a client and psychotherapist just don’t “click”. Don’t be afraid to seek the help of another therapist who is a better fit for you. The existing psychotherapist will certainly understand and won’t push you into working with them again. However, it is important to remember that it is counterproductive to see two different psychotherapists at the same time.  

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