Frequently Asked Questions

What can I expect in a therapy session?

Every therapy session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. During therapy sessions it is standard to talk about the primary issues and concerns in your life. It is common to schedule a series of weekly sessions, where each session lasts 50 minutes. Sometimes individuals who are going through a particularly difficult challenge may request more time per session or more than one session per week. Therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. There may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. Between sessions it is important process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life. For therapy to be most effective you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions.

What benefits can I expect from working with a therapist?

Therapy can provide insight and new perspectives into life’s challenges and can help create solutions to difficult problems. Many people find that working with a therapist can enhance personal development, improve relationships and family dynamics, and can ease the challenges of daily life. Sometimes, just having someone there to listen is helpful. Overall, people in therapy tend to have lower levels of anxiety and stress, decreased conflict, and improved quality of life.

Some of the benefits available from therapy include:

• Developing new skills for handling stress and anxiety
• Modifying unhealthy behavior and long-standing patterns
• Attaining insight into personal patterns and behavior
• Increasing confidence, peace, vitality, and well-being
• Improving ways to manage anger, depression and moods
• Discovering new ways to solve problems
• Navigating life’s obstacles more effectively
• Improving listening and communication skills
• Enhancing the overall quality of life

What is psychological testing?

Psychological testing and assessment  is done to help a psychologist better understand a person’s behaviors, skills, thoughts, and personality. Mental health professionals aren’t always sure what is the underlying cause of a person’s problems, and with a psychological assessment they are better equipped to figure out a way to help.

What are the benefits of having a psychological assessment?

Psychologists administer tests and assessments for a wide variety of reasons. Children who are experiencing difficulty in school, for example, may undergo aptitude testing or tests for learning disabilities. If a person is having problems at work or school, or in personal relationships, tests can help a psychologist understand whether he or she might have issues with anger management or interpersonal skills, or certain personality traits that contribute to the problem. Other tests evaluate whether clients are experiencing emotional disorders such as anxiety or depression.

Is therapy confidential?

In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and a psychotherapist. Information is not disclosed without written permission. However, there are number of exceptions to this rule.

Exceptions include:

• Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required by law to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
• If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person/s. The therapist must notify the police and inform the intended victim.
• If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to enlist their cooperation in insuring their safety. If they do not cooperate, further measures may be taken without their permission in order to ensure their safety.

What are your business hours? How do I schedule an appointment?

Our office staff is available from 9am to 4:30pm, Monday through Friday and will make your first appointment for you. Each therapist sets their own office hours, usually according to how they feel they can best serve their clients’ needs. When you have your first appointment, your therapist will talk with you about how to schedule future appointments with them.

Copyright. Westside Center Counseling