Being Able To See A Qualified, Experienced Therapist When You Need To Isn’t A luxury – It’s Essential, Because…
- Psychological problems can often get worse if you don’t have the right help.
- There’s no need to struggle on your own, especially as most mental health issues can make you feel very isolated.
- There are researched, proven Therapies such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) which have been shown to work effectively.
Reading This Article Will Help You…
- Know when you need to speak to an Expert
- Get the right type of Therapy for the problems you’re facing
- Find a good Therapist quickly when you need one
You’re probably reading this article because life isn’t quite working as you want it to.
If so, it’s time to think where the problems are…
It might be that there are things happening which are tough (and not just the big ticket life areas, such as buying a house or going through a separation.) If this is the case, it’s often helpful to think about why you’re struggling to cope, and to get some new ideas to help get you through.
It might more than difficult life event, and could be that you’re facing a particular mental health problem.
Much like physical health problems, these can come and go – and crucially can affect us all at some points in our lives. Common mental health, or psychological problems are things like Depression, Anxiety-based problems and Obsessive problems. Just like other health issues, it’s important to get the right type of treatment, as soon as you need it.
Without treatment, many mental health problems can get worse, and your chances of having similar problems happening again in the future can increase too.
When Should I Speak To An Expert?
If you’re struggling with either of the difficulties above, then it’s reasonable to speak to a professional about it. The human brain is complex, and our minds don’t come with instruction manuals. This means that many of us have very little idea how to use our minds in the healthiest ways – particularly when life gets difficult.
If you’re struggling then it’s always best to get some help straight away. It might be that some simple tips and advice from an expert are all that you need.
However, if it’s the case that you’re facing a diagnosable psychological problem then it’s essential to see a qualified and experienced mental health specialist – such as a Psychiatrist, Psychologist or appropriately qualified Therapist.
How To Get The Right Therapy For Your Problems?
It’s important to make sure that you speak to someone who has the right level of education and experience to help you.
In the UK, NHS Doctors and Mental Health professionals will (usually) have the right sets of skills to assess the problems you are facing, in order to give you the best advice. However, it can often take a long time to either get a Doctor’s appointment, or to actually see a specialist for Therapy.
This means that many people will explore having Psychological Therapy privately – with a Therapist, or Clinic outside of the NHS (just like ours). This means that you’re likely to pay for your own Therapy, but that you don’t have to wait to see an expert and start to deal with things in new ways.
Seeing someone privately can be really useful to make sure that problems don’t become worse – particularly if the difficulties you’re facing are starting to have an impact on your work and personal life.
One problem in the UK, is that there is very little regulation of Counsellors and Psychotherapists, which can make it very difficult to know who to book an appointment with.
It also means that many (often well meaning) people have set themselves up as private Counsellors, Therapists or Coaches. Whilst this makes it easier to see someone, it can also mean that the person you find on Google, or even in an internet directory may not have as much training, psychological or medical knowledge as you might expect.
This is important to think about, because getting the right help for Psychological Problems should be as important as getting the right help for Physical Problems. After all, you probably wouldn’t want a well-meaning plumber to do open-heart surgery on you, so why would you take your mind to someone without the best qualifications to give you treatment?
In most cases it’s important to find a specialist who has training at Post Graduate level from a mainstream University. For example, qualifications such as a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, a MSc or PG-Dip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) are the most usual qualifications that genuine experts will have.
Some professionals may be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), British Psychological Society (BPS) or British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapists (BABCP). However, increasingly, many Therapists are not renewing their accreditations with these organisations and instead are providing potential clients with their CVs and Qualifications instead.
If you speak to someone with these types of qualifications you can usually be confident that the advice they give will be effective, safe and reasonable.
We don’t recommend seeking treatment with individuals who have only Hypnotherapy or Counselling qualifications. Organisations such as the UKCP, or BACP also do not provide the highest levels of qualifications, training and experience required, in our opinion.
What About ‘Free First Therapy Appointment’ Offers?
Some mental health workers or clinics will offer a ‘free first appointment‘, or ‘free introduction session‘.
That’s because, in order to treat a psychological problem, the Therapist needs to have completed a full and thorough assessment with you. This helps them to fully understand both you, and the problems you are facing. To to this requires time, thoroughness and expertise. It’s often unlikely that professionals with the necessary qualifications and experience will be able to complete this free of charge. Typically completing an assessment properly will take between 1-3 hours, and most professionals simply can’t offer that amount of time for free.
Those practitioners who do offer free sessions tend to be struggling to find new patients and so are happy to work for free. However, like most things in life, you tend to get what you pay for. If you are not paying for someone’s expertise then it is likely you aren’t getting it.
Most professional clinics and qualified mental health Therapists will have a Secretary or Reception Team who will usually be able to tell you about the qualifications, experience and problem areas that they can work with. Finding out this type of professional information tends to be far better than the option of a ‘free taster’, which is usually unproductive.
How Long Does It Take To See A Therapist?
If you’re looking to speak with a Therapist via the NHS, this will depend upon the local services in your area. Typically waiting lists for a full, comprehensive course of Therapy – such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) can range between 3-24 months.
For most, effective, UK private Therapists and Clinics, you will be able to see someone within a week or two. Our clinic is often able to provide same day appointments too, depending upon your flexibility for different times.