Continue reading for a deeper look into mental health counseling. In this blog, we’ll look at the following:
- What is mental health counseling?
- Who are mental health counselors?
- What is the difference between psychiatric care and counseling?
- What are the five main types of therapy?
- What is the most effective mental health treatment?
- What is online mental health counseling?
- How does counseling affect mental health?
- Does insurance cover mental health counseling?
What is Mental Health Counseling?
It is estimated that 57.8 million American adults struggle with their mental health each year, with only 47.2% of this population seeking professional help. While beginning your counseling journey may seem daunting, it is more than possible.
Mental health counseling is relational work with a professional who offers a wide range of mental health services. By working through past and present issues, your counselor will create a treatment plan that best suits your specific needs. This can positively alter emotional, psychological, and mental demands, leading to a happier and healthier life.
Who are Mental Health Counselors?
While sharing similar outcomes, counseling and psychiatric care take different approaches when working with clients. Counseling focuses on the general betterment of your well-being and works to create life skills. This type of treatment is typically short-term and zeros in on treating specific issues and circumstances.
Mental health counselors are more than someone who listens as you lay across a futon. These types of counselors include but are not limited to
- Clinical social workers
- Substance abuse counselors
- Clinical psychologists
- Nurse practitioners
- Pastoral counselors
Each of these therapists works to diagnose and treat mental disorders while also working to solve real-life issues.
What is the Difference Between Psychiatric Care and Counseling?
Psychiatric care, on the other hand, focuses on correcting the medical cause of mental disorders. This is where prescription drugs become a part of a patient’s treatment plan. As prevention, diagnosis, and treatment all fall under this umbrella, psychiatric care is more long-term and general to various issues.
What are the Five Main Types of Therapy?
Mental health counseling falls into five major categories:
- Psychodynamic therapy: This therapy focuses on problem-solving complicated feelings, behaviors, or negative thoughts. This creates a close partnership between the therapist and the individual.
- Integrative or holistic therapy: This therapy focuses on the whole person, meaning spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional aspects are all tied together for better self-understanding.
- Humanistic therapy: This therapy helps one make rational choices while considering respect and concern for others.
- Cognitive therapy: This therapy focuses on what one thinks. This helps redirect patients away from negative thoughts and allows them to view challenging situations more productively.
- Behavior therapy: This therapy focuses on developing normal behaviors or desensitizing the client to their previous behaviors.
What is the Most Effective Mental Health Treatment?
While all listed treatments successfully combat mental health problems, psychotherapy has been considered the most effective treatment plan. This is because it explores your inner thoughts and feelings and is typically paired with medication. This can be performed in group therapy and conducted individually through a private practice. Along with medication, psychotherapy typically shows the quickest and most advanced results.
Online Mental Health Counseling
Online counseling is a way to receive professional treatment via phone, messaging, or video call. As society has become increasingly centered around technology, online mental health treatment is an excellent alternative to meeting face-to-face. This can be a positive service if you are far from a preferred counselor or prefer to conduct health counseling from the comfort of your home.
How Does Counseling Affect Mental Health?
Counseling has been proven to impact one’s life in many ways positively. Some of these benefits may include:
- Relief from anxiety, depression, or other mental illnesses
- Better expression of emotions
- Better management of emotions
- Greater self-acceptance
- Increased self-esteem
- Improved internal and external relationships
- Ability to overcome self-sabotaging behaviors
- A sense of greater control over your life
- Sense of support
Clinical mental health counseling can help you work through mental disorders, career changes, past trauma, marriage and family issues, and other life difficulties. Sorting through big emotions, and knowing you’re not alone, can help you walk down a more comfortable life path!
Does Insurance Cover Mental Health Counseling?
Most insurance companies can cover therapy. The Federal Parity Law requires insurance companies to equally cover counseling the same way they would cover medical and surgical costs. Contact your insurance representative and therapist to know the exact coverage you will receive.