Individual psychotherapy

What Is Individual Therapy?

When people in Dedham, MA, think of individual psychotherapy, they often picture the image presented by various media outlets with a person sitting (or lying) on a couch and the therapist sitting nearby with a notepad and pen in hand. Though this is often the perception of individual therapy, many don’t understand what is involved in individual psychotherapy.

Individual psychotherapy is also referred to as talk therapy. In this kind of therapy, a mental health professional works one-on-one with a client during in-person sessions. Individual psychotherapy is the most common kind of therapy and includes multiple approaches.

The goal of individual psychotherapy is for the client to understand their thoughts and behavior patterns better. This increased understanding helps increase daily function and overall well-being. People can learn valuable tips for managing stress and dealing with troubling situations and relationships. They can also learn to set goals, become more self-aware, and make healthier decisions.

Types of Psychotherapists

When a person in Dedham, MA, seeks individual psychotherapy, they will meet with a trained, licensed mental health professional regularly. The kinds of mental health professionals that provide individual psychotherapy include:

  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatric nurse practitioners
  • Licensed clinical social workers
  • Marriage and family therapists

Sometimes, a student or trainee in one of these fields will provide individual psychotherapy under the supervision of a licensed mental health professional.

What to Expect from Psychotherapy

Before a patient begins individual psychotherapy, they should meet with the therapist and communicate any expectations they have for the therapy. Having this conversation will help them both develop reasonable expectations and goals.

Client responsibilities for psychotherapy include:

  • Decide what they want to address in therapy sessions.
  • Develop a way of finding a therapist they can work with (using a friend or family referral, asking their primary care physician, or contacting an insurance professional for a referral)
  • Interview therapists to determine whether they can deal with the following:
    • Expertise, education level, and experience of the professional
    • Rate the therapist charges and whether insurance covers the services
    • The goals, session, and treatment length
    • The location of the office and the availability of emergency services

The First Psychotherapy Session

Clients attending their first therapy session in Dedham, MA, can expect to talk about why they feel they need therapy. Their chosen therapist will listen and will ask questions that give them information about the client’s mental, physical, and emotional health. Sometimes, it takes multiple sessions before a therapist fully understands how to best help the client.

Some clients will interview several therapists before choosing the one for them. Therapists can also decline to treat a client if they don’t think they have the expertise to help that client. If that happens, the therapist will provide a referral to someone else because professional and ethical obligations bind them.

Typical Session Structure

Usually, the client will do the majority of the talking in a psychotherapy session. The therapist will provide feedback or answer specific questions. Managing sessions this way allows the client to build self-confidence and keeps the session focused on the client rather than the therapist. Those who participate in individual psychotherapy sessions should expect to feel various feelings while allowing the therapist to help them understand why they feel the emotions they do.

Closing Thoughts

Individual psychotherapy is also called talk therapy because the clients discuss their issues with the therapist. These individual sessions are designed to assist Dedham, MA, clients become more self-aware and more confident.