The demand for therapists has spiked over the past few years, thanks to the stresses of the pandemic and other large-scale crises. With the heightened uncertainty of everyday life, increased restrictions and social isolation, it’s no wonder that so many of us feel like we aren’t at our best – and could use a little expert help to get there.
According to a study from the American Psychological Association, demand for psychologists is skyrocketing, with clients reporting reasons such as: anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, substance abuse and addiction.
Waitlists for highly trained therapists are growing by the day, so if you’re searching for counselling in Vancouver BC, now’s the time to start your search.
Here are some tips as you start your search for counselling (North Vancouver or Vancouver):
What Kind Of Therapy Do They Provide?
The first question to ask any therapist is what kind of therapy they provide.
Popular therapeutic approaches include: Freudian therapy (psychoanalysis), client-centred counselling, cognitive-behavioural therapy, mindfulness-based counselling, narrative therapy, EMDR and creative therapy.
If you ask what method the therapist uses, and you get a confused reply, chances are you’re going to get confused results.
How Do They Guarantee Results?
Once you choose an approach, find out how your prospective therapist determines results. It can’t just be a generic “do you feel better?” You need to know: Do they just let you lie on the couch for years, with no tangible sign of improvement, or do they have metrics? Do they have a set plan for how long it should expect to take? What is their average length of time in treatment?
When you make such a substantial investment of time, money and trust, you should know how you’re determining whether things are moving in the right direction.
How Do They Train Their Therapists?
If you are looking at a larger counselling clinic, make sure to ask how the group ensures that every one of their therapists takes a similar approach. As good as a practice’s reputation might be, you want to make sure they have a plan to guarantee consistent results across the board. You also need to ask any prospective therapist what kind of education their counsellors have (do they have a Masters degree? are they graduate students?) and how they know that each of their clinical counsellors are on the same page.
Types of therapists include: psychiatrists (medical doctors who can prescribe medication), psychologists, licensed professional counsellors, and licensed clinical social workers.
Free Counselling/Low Cost Counselling (Vancouver)
Quality therapy is rarely low cost – which can be a barrier that compounds already existing problems of poverty or income-precarity. BC Medical Services Plan (MSP) may cover mental health services when you access them through a hospital or mental health clinic.
However, if you are low-income and are looking for therapy without a referral from a doctor, ask every prospective counselling practice you contact about the possibility of a sliding scale. Remember, if you can’t afford individual counselling, group counselling can be a cost-effective solution.
It’s not as hard as you might think to find counselling services (Vancouver). Start by thinking about what your goals are and the approach that feels most suited to you. Then you can look for a therapist who will work alongside you to get yourself into the best head space possible.