Therapists can help treat mental health conditions, change damaging behaviours, assist with conflict resolution, and more. While many people know they could benefit from therapy and learning new coping mechanisms, they don’t always know where to find the most suitable therapist. There are never any guarantees that the first therapist you work with will be the right one, but you might improve your chances by taking the following steps:

Look At Your Insurance Directory

If you have medical insurance, consider looking up their directory to see which counseling service providers they cover. For example, if you have an Aetna plan, you would specifically look for an in-network Aetna therapist. By looking explicitly for in-network therapists, you can benefit from lower per-session rates to ensure the help you need is within your budget.

Ask for Recommendations

If you regularly confide in your loved ones, you might feel comfortable asking whether they know of a therapist they would recommend. Choosing from a long list of potential options can be daunting, but a recommendation might mean you can narrow down your list and potentially end up working with a counseling service provider you trust.

Think About Your Goals

Many people reach out to therapists for help when they have a particular problem they would like to solve or work through. They might want to work on their communication skills, learn coping techniques for stress and anxiety, or improve their relationships.

Think about your goals, and let them guide you toward a therapist who might be able to help. Most therapists specialize in particular areas, and if you can find a therapist whose skillset matches your goals, you might stand a better chance of getting the help you need.

Focus On Areas of Expertise

Not all therapists help all patients. Some focus on couples and working through the issues threatening to tear their relationships apart, while others guide their  patients through stress, anxiety, and depression to help them live more fulfilling lives.

Many therapists also specialize in PTSD, trauma, and abuse, often requiring unique skills to support the people who need it the most. By identifying the area of expertise you could benefit from the most, you might be able to significantly narrow down your pool of options for a more straightforward selection process.

Consider Your Preferred Therapy Type

Picture therapy in your mind, and you might imagine sitting on a sofa and discussing your problems and concerns with a trained professional. However, not all therapy looks like that. In fact, most counseling service providers offer a range of therapy types depending on what you hope to achieve during your sessions. Learn more about the following therapy types, and you might discover one you believe will be the most fitting for your needs:

● Cognitive behavioural therapy

● Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy

● Behaviour therapy

● Acceptance and commitment therapy

● Psychoanalytic therapy

● Dialectical behaviour therapy

● Art therapy

● Interpersonal psychotherapy

Some therapists specialize in one or multiple therapy approaches, so consider what you’re looking for and research the therapists offering those services.

Evaluate Your Budget

Your mental health is important, and you might be willing to spend whatever you need to ensure you can get help. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t factor costs into decision-making before making an appointment.

If you have health insurance, talk to your provider about what they cover to determine the difference you’ll need to pay. Knowing what each session costs can mean you can prioritize the therapists you can realistically afford.

Explore Credentials

When you’re trusting someone with your mental health and the inner workings of your personal life, you want to make sure they’re an expert in their field and will do right by you at all times. Before choosing a particular provider, check their credentials to be confident in their abilities and qualifications.

Therapists should be licensed to practice in their state, area, and online, and they might also have additional credentials to practice a specific therapy type. If you can’t find a particular therapist’s credentials, don’t be afraid to ask for them for your peace of mind.

Choosing the right therapists for your needs won’t always be easy, but it can be more straightforward than you think. Take these steps above, and it might not be long until you find the most suitable counseling service provider for your needs.