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Is therapy worth the cost

You have probably been looking for therapy in Campbell or in your surrounding area and have noticed that therapists in Campbell and the rest of the therapists in the Bay Area charge some dollars for therapy. You want help for your mental health but are not sure if you should financially commit to counseling. As a licensed therapist serving adults and teens in Campell, CA and the surrounding areas, I understand that therapy is an investment and some people are hesitant about investing. In the end, it is important to remember that your mental health is a vital component of your overall well-being, so it is worth making the effort and investing a significant amount of time and energy into it.

is therapy worth the cost

How to pay for therapy: Insurance, Sliding Scale, FSA, and EAP

The top reason I see adults steer away from therapy and counseling is the cost if they don't have health insurance or if the therapist they find does not accept insurance. Partially a reason why people attempt to go to an out-of-network provider (therapist not within their insurance network) is because of the long wait to receive therapy. Some people can wait months to have a therapist within their network see them and that just for the initial appointment and the follow-up therapy appointment could be weeks or months out due to their high therapy caseloads. Yikes. But did you know that some health insurance plans have out-of-network benefits which means you can get reimbursed for some of your costs for therapy? A superbill can be provided by your mental health provider or therapist. To request reimbursement for mental health services, you would submit a superbill to your insurance company. 

Alternatively, some therapists offer sliding scales to reduce the cost of therapy services. Some therapists may also accept BlueShield, Aetna, Cigna, Medicaid, or Medicare. Please check with your therapist or provider to confirm which insurance plans they accept. You can also research online to find mental health providers who accept your insurance plan. The therapist still gets paid and you get a reduced therapy fee. You can easily ask a potential therapist if they have sliding scale options. Keep in mind that if you are asking an out-of-network provider you might be able to get a sliding scale but that doesn't mean they will also take your insurance. 

The next option to paying for insurace is going through your employer. EAP stands for Employer Assistance Program that is provided by your employer to cover an x amount of therapy sessions at no cost to the employee. You would have to verify with your employer if that benefit is provided to you and if you could use EAP for out-of-network providers. Some employers will cover a certain amount of sessions to outside therapy providers and some employers will contract with therapists or a therapy angency to provide those sessions to you. The upside to this is that you don't have to pay for your sessions but the downside is that the amount of sessions the employer is willing to pay for is limited. Some EAP programs offer 4-8 and others up to 12 but it varies by employer. The downside to having limited sessions is say you have built a solid rapport with your therapist and are working on your anxiety in relationships, or depression, or childhood trauma then once you begin to do that clinical work you might have to stop because those therapy sessions are no longer being covered by the employer, which is a disservice to the client and the therapist therapeutic relationship. 

paying with health insurance

Using FSA to pay for therapy

Paying for therapy with an FSA is convenient, and it is definitely worth considering. Many individuals are able to file with their insurance for therapy reiumbursement costs and are able to receive a portion back. You can also use your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) benefits to pay for therapy. Not everyone knows that mental health services falls under medical treatment and therefore FSA can be used to pay for therapy and teen therapy. Medical or mental health therapy is eligible for reimbursement with a flexible spending account (FSA), health savings account (HSA), and health reimbursement account (HRA).

What will a therapist help me with? 

A licensed therapist is equipped at supporting individuals struggling with their mental health. They create a space for clients to process their emotions, thoughts, and learn new ways of coping with life stressors such as breakups, relationship issues, anger issues, work stress, financial stress, marriage stress, etc. Each therapist has different specialties skills,experience, and training. You would pick a therapist if you feel equipped that they can support you to begin seeing postiveresults. 

You are able to choose a therapist in Campbell that you feel comfortable with, that will hear you out, will offer you support, and will challenge you. An option is Healing Therapy Services, a private practice serving couples, adults, and teens in Campbell, CA and the Bay Area. Healing Therapy Services is equipped to provide couples therapy, marriage counseling, individual therapy, teen therapy, and group counseling. 

Here are some of the issues addressed and their symptoms. These issues are treated in therapy.

  • Depression 

  • Anxiety 

  • Trauma  

  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) 

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

  • Self-esteem issues 

  • Grief and loss 

  • Relationship issues 

  • School stress

  • Career stress 

Other issues that are indicators that your mental health is struggling and that you need professional help from a therapist are: 

Depression causing low self-esteem, relationship problems, self-destructive behaviors, traumatic experiences, suicidal thoughts, anxiety, and difficulty with coping skills.

Anxiety leads to excessive worry, restlessness, difficulty concentrating, irritability, muscle tension, difficulty sleeping, and fatigue.

Traumatic experiences cause symptoms such as fear, intense anxiety, nightmares, flashbacks, insomnia, avoidance of situations that remind the person of the trauma, difficulty concentrating, and feeling detached from loved ones.

Maybe you are also noticing that you struggle in keeping relationships, you feel burned out, you have no energy left, you feel unwanted, you feel like you have no control over your emotions or you can't stop assuming the worst possible outcome. Then you would benefit from professional mental health support from a licensed therapist. This support is worth the investment. 

What type of therapy is worth investing in? 

There are various evidence-based treatment methods that can help you. The most common issues people struggle with are anxiety and depression. Some effective evidence-based treatments are Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy, and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy. 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy focuses on changing negative thought patterns and behaviors, Solution Focused Therapy focuses on finding solutions in the present, Psychodynamic Therapy focuses on understanding the unconscious origins of anxiety and depression, and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy focuses on helping individuals develop more effective coping skills. What intervention your therapist uses depends on your presenting problems. Other therapeutic interventions are Internal Family Systems, Psychoanalytic, Existential, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). Some of these evidence-based treatment modalities require specific training and certifications.

For instance, EMDR is a psychotherapy intervention that has reached high popularity because of its ability to help people heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences such as trauma. This specific therapy intervention consists of an 8 phase treatment that calls for your EMDR therapist to be certified and trained in this approach. This knowledge and skill that your EMDR therapist posses in order to support you deal with the unpleasant impact of trauma is worth innvesting. These listed therapeutic interventions are worth investing in to see positive results.

How long will I have to be in therapy to see the results

Some people begin to see the positive impact of therapy in 4-6 sessions and some might need 8-12 sessions or more butthis depends on the individual and what issues and symptoms they are presenting. Maybe you enter therapy to discuss work stress but as time progresses you begin to realize the reason you struggle with saying no at work is because you were raised in a household where you saying no would have consequences. Then you begin to transition to processing your childhood with your licensed therapist. The topic/agenda you come into therapy with might not be what you leave with. So the amount of therapy sessions you need will vary. As time progresses you and your therapist could discuss reducing your session frequency from weekly therapy sessions to bi-weekly therapy sessions as you begin to makeprogress.

Have you ever heard of anyone or met anyone that has done their own therapy for anxiety or depression and regretted it or turned out worst? Chances are if you met someone, friend, or family member that has done their own therapy, they are doing better because of it. There is no doubt that therapy is an investment of finanances and time but do the rewards outweigh that? Therapy is worth the cost depending what you need support with such as depression, relationships, anxiety, PTSD, childhood trauma, sexual trauma, addiction, marriage help, parenting stress, work stress, career change, etc. 

You get to decide how much time and money you invest in yourself but therapy will always be a benefit. It shows in your performance, the way you feel, how you relate to people, and how you view life that you live in a more positive light when your mental health is doing well. You can continue to complete the investment in therapy or you can give it a shot. There is no better time than now for you to reap the benefits of mental health. 

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