What you have all learned lately is that nobody is immune to mental health issues, even the toughest might collapse when under a lot of stress, and stress I not in shortage today. Seeking help is always welcomed, there are people trained and educated to help you and will do that if you make the first step. But you probably don’t know what kind of help you need, most of the people suffering from different mental health issues only recognize the symptoms, the uncomfortable feeling of panic, anxiety, melancholy, loss of interest, appetite, etc. And don’t fool yourself you are smart enough to get out of it by yourself, counseling has got nothing to do with smarts, it is a lot more experience and outer perspective you probably lack at the moment.
Mental health counselors are professionals who have undergone extensive training and education processes, and who utilize different psychotherapy methods to help people suffering mental health issues. Counselors work with individuals or groups who are dealing with cognitive, behavioral, and emotional issues, and you can find counseling at more places than you’d guess:
- Mental health clinics
- Private practice
- Community centers
- Large businesses (alongside human resources)
Also, the range of help counselors offer is extensive, covering people suffering depression, phobias, anxiety, social difficulties, addiction, and substance abuse, grief, marital and relationship difficulties, and when you decide to visit one, be sure to find a suitable counselor for the issue you are experiencing. They use a different approach for each issue, and they use a wellness model that highlights your strength rather than your weaknesses.
When on the clock, counselors offer:
- Work with individuals, groups, couples, and whole communities
- Examine issues including anger management, relationships, substance abuse, depression, stress, even suicide
- Work with family issues (dysfunctional families)
- Development of therapeutic processes
- Encourage an open environment where people are free to talk about emotions and experiences
- Prescribe medication
Probably the main reason why you should visit a counselor Is experiencing one or more symptoms mentioned above, and when you do look for a specialist in a certain area of expertise, even if you are wrong about your state of issue, they will refer you to their colleagues who are experts in the area you are seeking help for.
Anxiety disorders – being in a state of a burdening uncomfortable and dreadful mental situation most of the time is most certainly terrifying to live with. Counselors are dealing with anxiety attacks very successfully, although it takes time. Almost always therapy is followed by suitable medications, and even though you’ll probably not be cured, your symptoms will become much more manageable, almost as they have disappeared.
Depression – mild or severe, it makes very little difference to people suffering from depression, and the number of people living with this mental health issue is getting larger each year. Counseling can very much help you deal with depression and your therapy will probably start with medications like anti-depressants, for a while, but after few months of therapy you will feel a lot better, that is for sure. Honesty and trust are very important; you have to build a trustworthy relationship with your counselor.
Substance abuse problems – being addicted to alcohol, drugs, or prescription has many negative consequences, very often life-threatening, and leads to problems with your family and loved ones and problems at work. It is a serious issue and takes a lot of time and discipline to resolve this issue. BetterHelp can help you find the root cause for your substance abuse, and you might need to takes some medications to ease the withdrawal process, which is not easy to get by. Many often there are support groups lead by counselors, which give very good results.
Relationship counseling – although it does not seem like a mental health issue, relationship problems can lead to the development of various conditions, mental and physical. Statistics have shown that relationship counseling has helped many couples find their happiness, showing you the right way of communicating, which is often the reason for relationship problems, lack of communication.
Anger management – if you have temper issues, seeing a counselor can help you a lot, and you can take action by yourself, by your human resources, or by court order. People having issues with anger are not to be underestimated, in many cases, the burst of anger is uncontrollable and can be a serious problem in everyday living.
The list of issues you can seek help from a counselor is endless, and if you are feeling any of the symptoms you might think are cause by some mental health issue you should visit a counselor and see where it might take you. The counselor will not tell what to do to help you will your problem, think of it as holding the torch while you seek the exit from a cave, guiding you, but still, you have to walk the walk.
When seeing for a counselor you should pay attention to several important details:
- Make sure they are qualified and licensed, simple check online should give you that information
- The price varies, but private counseling can be expensive, ranging from 20$ to a couple of hundreds.
- Usually, the initial first session is free, and you can get a discount if you are a student, unemployed, or on a low wage, and single parents.
- You can also try and use the community counselor, which is free, or some other voluntary organization that gives counseling services for less or free.
- Look for online counseling, which is growing rapidly with the world’s newest developments (coronavirus outbreak). Online counseling can be multiple times more affordable than face-to-face counseling, and has many benefits, like using it anytime, anywhere, you choose the counselor, and you can do it from home! Negatives are that for more severe cases, online therapy cannot give you the same results as conventional therapy!
However you do it, wherever you do it does not make all the difference, what matters is you take the first appointment, share your feeling and thoughts, and give it time, therapy helps over time, it is a slow-growing process which does work.