What is Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy is a method of treatment intended to improve the mental health of individuals, couples, or families. Psychotherapy (sometimes called counseling) can help people with ordinary every day problems and it can also be used to help those with deep psychological pain.

Is It Normal To Be Nervous About Contacting A Psychotherapist?

Yes. Whatever you want to work on in psychotherapy is obviously important to you otherwise you would not consider investing your time, energy, and money. 

Many people worry about being judged or misunderstood. Others worry that the therapist will not be able to help in any meaningful way. Frequently people find that their nervousness subsides during the initial session as the therapist treats their concerns with seriousness, respect, and compassion.

What Are Some Of The Ways Psychotherapy Can Help? 

Psychotherapy may help you:

  • Make well-informed decisions regarding your career, relationships, and other important life choices.
  • Manage stressful situations or life transitions 0. Increase your capacity for intimacy
  • Mourn the loss of a loved one or a significant relationship
  • Resolve long standing emotional roadblocks
  • Foster awareness, compassion and forgiveness
  • Establish closer and more fulfilling relationships
  • Feel more capable in your studies or career
  • Overcome feelings of anxiety and depression
  • Experience greater pleasure in your day-to-day life
  • Make better use of your abilities
  • Gain greater freedom in your choices and actions

What is a Ph.D. and how does it differ from other mental health degrees?

Dr. Prefontaine's Ph. D is in Marriage and Family Therapy.  Those with this degree are more focused on understanding your family, family of creation, family of origin, and the family within your psyche. 

How long will I need to be in therapy?

I work efficiently and effectively to help resolve my clients challenges. Everyone's needs and personal situations are different, and the length of therapy depends on the complexity of the challenges for which you are seeking help. 

Do I work with step/blended families and extended family members? 

Yes, today's 'families' consist of various arrangements. For many blended families, there is a challenging period of adjustment to new roles and relationships. Family therapy can help each blended family member become clear of his or her role and how to communicate effectively within the new family. 

How long are the appointments?

Psychotherapy appointments may be scheduled for between 45 and 60 minutes. Sessions can be scheduled weekly or biweekly as needed.

How Do I Know Whether A Psychotherapist Is The Right One For Me?

The initial sessions not only allow the psychotherapist to get to know you, but also allow you to get to know the therapist. Specifically, you can assess how comfortable you feel with the therapist and how confident you feel that he or she understands you. 

If you feel that your concerns are not being treated seriously and sensitively, you should look for a different psychotherapist. However, even a competent and experienced psychotherapist may not be the right one for you. As in any relationship, some people 'click' better than others. If you feel that the therapist might not be a good match for you, you should obtain additional referrals and meet with other psychotherapists

How Can I Make The Most Of Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy works best when you share your thoughts and feelings as openly and honestly as possible. Some people find this easier than others. 

Most of us 'screen' our thoughts, often without realizing it. This may be because we find them inconsequential, embarrassing, painful, or inappropriate. Your therapist should help you feel more comfortable sharing your thoughts so that you can make the most of your treatment.

Will My Health Insurance Pay For Psychotherapy?

Health insurance policies can be very confusing, especially when it comes to psychotherapy coverage. Most insurance policies have a group of psychotherapists, called in-network providers, who will charge you a co-payment for each visit.

In addition, many insurance plans will reimburse a percentage of a psychotherapist's fee as long as the psychotherapist is a licensed mental health professional (e.g., a licensed psychologist, psychiatrist, or social worker).This allows you more flexibility so that you can find a psychotherapist who is right for you.

Please call to find out if your insurance is accepted.

How do services intended for an adolescent differ from adult therapy?

Adolescents benefit from learning insights and coping skills that are presented by the therapist in an age-appropriate manner. In addition to working one-to-one with an adolescent, therapists may seek input from important adults, such as parents, caregivers and teachers. Most adolescent mental health professionals will coach parents on how best to address the needs of an adolescent struggling with behavioral or emotional issues.

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