Things to Consider When Choosing A Psychologist

Finding a Psychologist

Choosing a therapist is a very personal choice and can be difficult. The following are key points to keep in mind as you search for a professional therapist.

What Type of Service Do You Need?

First, you should determine who needs the services, and what issues will be addressed. Do you need individual, family or couples therapy, and, specifically, what are the difficulties that you experience? The more specific you can become in your definition, the better you will be able to present your issues to the professionals involved.  Consider the theoretical orientation that would best suit your understanding of your problems, and that you would be the most comfortable working with in addressing them.

What Sort of Training and Qualifications Should You Expect?

Next, you should look for a professional trained to provide the services you need. Explore the training and qualifications requirements for mental health care professionals.

Our Find a Psychologist feature allows you to explore the qualifications of many psychologists within the San Joaquin Valley. You can also ask friends or relatives for recommendations, or check with your insurance company, which often provides a list of providers in your area.

The Board of Psychology provides a web site which details this search with more depth and may help guide you further by providing background information on licensed psychologists.

Other Issues to Consider

Feel free to interview prospective therapists. Ask questions regarding their fee structure, insurance billing, cancellation and emergency practices, how long they’ve been in practice and whether they are familiar with and have had experience working with the type of issues that you wish to discuss. You may wish to interview a few therapists to find someone with whom you feel comfortable.
You may also wish to give some thought as to whether you would feel more comfortable working with a man or a woman.
Remember, all professional therapists and counselors need to adhere to ethical guidelines. At no time or point is sexual contact ever appropriate in therapy.

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