The mind is a complicated thing. No two people experience the world the same way. It’s for this reason that mental health treatments and therapies need to be diverse. What works for one person might not work so well for another. If you’re seeing a therapist and someone you know is, too, but your therapies don’t match up, there’s a reason for it. The fact is that mental health requires multiple approaches to care. To learn more about the types of treatment out there, read on.
Medications are the perfect way to treat depression for many people. Whether for anxiety or clinical depression, prescription medications have come a long way over the years and can often be the first answer to helping treat mental health. For many in the United States, MDMA therapy is a fantastic example of how medication can help with things like traumatic stress disorder, treatment-resistant PTSD, traumatic memories, and more.
While medications are great for many people, they need to be prescribed by a psychiatrist. Licensed doctors with extensive training in psychology and mental health psychiatrists work with clients to find the right med and dosages. For this reason, they often encourage several therapy sessions before either making a diagnosis or issuing a prescription.
For some people, the structure and accountability that comes with meeting a counselor regularly online is the perfect way to keep a check on their overall state of mind. One silver lining to the pandemic is that help is easy to get online.
Teletherapy is more available than ever and it only takes a few clicks of the mouse to get into a teletherapy service. If talk therapy might be for you, call your health insurance company to see what they will cover then give your psychotherapist or a new therapist a call. If you haven’t had a therapist before, make sure you research your potential clinician through a Google search for reviews. You’ll also want to know what they specialize in and what types of therapeutic modalities they use. Knowing this ahead of time will help in making a good pick for you.
If you aren’t sure who to pick, talk to the person making the appointment. Explain your basic symptoms and why you hope to get a therapist. They’ll be able to ask questions and your answers will guide them in the direction of the right kind of therapy or psychiatry for you.
Religion and Spirituality
Roman Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, or simply spiritual. it doesn’t matter. Whatever your religious beliefs, many people experience success when combining their spirituality with their psychotherapy sessions or in correlation with self-help. If that sounds like you, consider picking up a new revised standard version bible and a journal. Something as simple as annotating your favorite verses or proverbs can be very therapeutic.
But don’t stop at reading a bible alone in your room. Think about talking to your therapist about how important religion is to you. When y our therapist knows how much religion means to you, you have a better chance at them more quickly understanding you and your life goals and values. Another very valid approach to care, religion breeds faith and hope; both critical to the healing process.
Narrative and Art Therapy
No two people are clients are the same and neither are therapists. That is, what works for one person might be laughable to another. It’s a therapist’s job to figure that out and why there are many layers and ways to achieve better mental wellness.
Narrative and art therapists with creative clients to help them express their life stories and self-definition through words or art of a combination. Great for both children and adults, this type of post-modern therapy is a modality built to empower people. Whether used in combination with medications or not, the idea behind narrative and art therapies is to help clients learn to rewrite their stories and the way they see themselves.
For example, maybe you believe you’ve always had bad luck, that everyone around you gets hurt, or that you cause pain and misery wherever you go. An art therapist would have you draw a self-portrait or make a collage illustrating this feeling. Then, after talking it out, they would ask you to paint a self-portrait of more positive ways you might see yourself. A narrative therapist might ask, “But how can you change that story? How could you get to your happy ending?”
Both client-driven therapeutic modalities will work toward the same goal: helping clients to learn different ways to look at their situations and worlds. They will then teach the client how to take control of the paintbrush or typewriter to redefine their lives.
For some, this type of expressive therapy is the answer to working through sadness, feelings of isolation, and more. Where others like to meditate, these creative clients would rather journal. If that sounds like you, consider keeping a journal of your moods, diet, or just things you see in the world around you.
For some people, a combination of talk therapy and self-help is the answer to healthy thinking and living. For these people, finding time for self-care, hobbies, and even reading self-help books or joining online support groups is the perfect way to work through life’s challenges. For others, the same is true with self-help and medications, while only seeing psychiatrists as needed for medication tweaks. Again, every person is different and it’s exactly why multiple approaches to care are so important.
In the end, whether you’re a person who believes in medications or someone who’d rather talk things out, there are no wrong answers in how you attend to your mental health. A personal decision meant to be had between a doctor and patient or therapist and client, the best thing you can do for yourself is to explore your options.
The great news is that the fact that you’re thinking about your mental wellness and doing what you can to put your mental health first is already a big step in the healing process. Whether you need a tune-up or have been feeling down, be sure to look at your options before deciding what might be the best path for you.