CounselingAnxious About Starting Therapy?

Nikita Barretto - Clinical Psychologist

Anxious about starting therapy

Anxious About Starting Therapy?

“Therapy” as a word comes with its benefits as well as stigmas. In most cultures, it is frowned upon to seek professional psychological support. Asking for help is equated to being weak. For those who power through judgment are faced with decisions such as who do I go to? What kind of therapy should I do? How long would I have to do this for? Does it work? Etc.

Let me try answering a few of these to help ease the process of decision-making for you.

What kind of mental health professional in UAE suits me?

Ideally selecting a mental health professional in UAE can’t be based on a specific gender or nationality or race etc. At the same time, these are factors that one has to be mindful of, there should not be determining factors. Most good therapists would acquaint themselves with different cultures and perspectives. They view the situation from the client’s standpoint irrespective of gender. The factors you want to be mindful of are their approaches to therapy, their area of expertise, and their background experience.  Many therapists also offer a free 15 minutes phone consultation, this could help familiarise yourself with them before the session.

What are the kinds of therapies available?

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

CBT is a type of psychotherapy used to modify thought patterns that contribute to negative actions or feelings. It is a mix of cognitive therapy and behavioural therapy that focuses on addressing negative thought patterns and behaviour that triggers mental health issues. It includes tools like mood trackers, journaling, controlled breathing, mindfulness etc.

  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR)

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a psychotherapy technique used to treat anxiety, PTSD, and more.

EMDR therapy is a phased, focused approach to treating trauma and other symptoms by reconnecting the traumatized person in a safe and measured way to the images, self-thoughts, emotions, and body sensations associated with the trauma, and allowing the natural healing powers of the brain to move toward adaptive resolution.

  • Psychoanalytic therapy

Psychoanalytic therapy is a form of in-depth talk therapy that aims to bring unconscious or deeply buried thoughts and feelings to the conscious mind, so that repressed experiences and emotions, often from childhood, can be brought to the surface and examined.

Working together, the therapist and client look at how these early hidden and stifled memories have affected the client’s thinking, behaviour, and relationships in adulthood. This therapy is based on Sigmund Freud’s theories about psychoanalysis.

  • Schema therapy

Schema therapy is a newer type of therapy that combines elements of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), psychoanalysis, attachment theory, and emotion-focused therapy, among others. In schema therapy, you’ll work with a therapist to uncover and understand your schemas, sometimes called early maladaptive schemas.

Schemas are unhelpful patterns that some people develop if their emotional needs aren’t met as a child. These schemas can affect you throughout life and contribute to problematic coping methods and behaviours if they aren’t addressed. Schema therapy aims to teach you how to ensure your emotional needs are met in a healthy way that doesn’t cause distress.

  • Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT)

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) is a type of talk therapy (psychotherapy). It’s based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), but it’s specially adapted for people who experience emotions very intensely. “Dialectical” means combining opposite ideas. DBT focuses on helping people accept the reality of their lives and their behaviours, as well as helping them learn to change their lives, including their unhelpful behaviours.

There are many more therapy approaches, most therapists use an eclectic approach to help clients depending on their needs.

How long does a session last and what’s the duration and frequency that I need to do the sessions?

Individual sessions are either conducted between 45 minutes to 60 minutes. However, the initial consultation can also be extended to 90 minutes.

In the initial stages, most clients will have sessions on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, depending on the severity of the condition. Eventually, this can taper down to sessions every two weeks to a monthly follow up eventually to a termination of the sessions. This will also be followed by a follow-up every 6 months or ad-hoc.

Does therapy work for everyone?

The simple answer is NO! but the truth is more complicated. Therapy is a process that has multiple factors for its success. Factors such as time, finances, the willingness of the client, consistency, rapport between the therapist and client etc. Due to the very nature of therapy, the progress is not linear which may be wrongly assumed as a failure. Sometimes the client is not ready to face his/her inner traumas. Whatever the reason may be, therapy can be a hit or miss depending on the situation, but one cannot discount the advantage of just talking to someone in a safe non-judgemental environment, which is a benefit in itself.

The bottom line is, that initiating therapy can be difficult, however the benefits out way the hurdles. To know more get in touch with me a clinical psychologist in Dubai.

Our session aims to establish a supportive space to facilitate personal growth while creating a meaningful purpose in life

Schedule a consultation today!

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