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What’s Psychotherapy and Social Work and how do these terms relate to Counselling and Therapy?

Psychotherapy is the use of talk therapies such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Mindfulness Therapy to treat psychological problems, like difficulties with emotions, behaviours or perceptions. It is a controlled act, and practitioners must be properly trained with licencing from an accredited body (e.g. College of Psychologists, College of Social Work, College of Psychotherapy).

Social Work is the profession concerned with helping individuals and communities enhance well-being. They help people resolve their problems by developing skills and using the resources around them. Social Workers are licenced and regulated by the College of Social Work. Some social workers have specialized training to include psychotherapy within their practice.

Counselling and Therapy are more generic terms referring to the practice of giving someone advice or helping someone resolve something. One does not need registration or special training or licencing to be a counsellor or therapist.

Midtown’s clinicians are psychotherapists and social workers with master’s degree education and extensive professional development credits and field experience.

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What’s Occupational Therapy and how does an O.T. contribute to my rehabilitation?

Occupational Therapy helps to solve the problems that interfere with a person’s ability to do the things that are important to them – everyday things like taking care of themselves and others, being productive, engaging in leisure activities. They employ specialized tools to help the client and the entire treatment team better understand the client’s needs and circumstances. They then make informed recommendations, and then help their clients access the needed resources, whether that be education, encouragement, tools or funding.

Individuals suffering complex injuries during a motor vehicle accident (MVA) are often referred to an O.T. It’s usually the O.T.’s job to do the initial big-picture assessment as well as to keep an eye on the whole treatment situation, help with referrals, equipment and know-client, and ensure nothing gets missed. Occupational therapists are licenced through the Ontario College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario, and often have extensive training and experience in particular fields suited to their work.

Midtown’s Occupational Therapists are master’s degree trained with extensive professional development credits and field experience.

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How do I find a good therapist?

The quality of your connection with your therapist is of utmost importance to your experience and chances of success in treatment. However, there is no such thing as a “good” therapist. Instead, you should look for someone with the qualifications, skills and personality that help you feel heard and respected, can attend to the specific complexities of your circumstances, and who partner well with you toward accomplishing your goals.

To find a therapist that ‘fits’ you, do your research – ask around, read their bio on Psychology Today, and ask to speak to them by phone before making any commitments, tell them your situation and see how you feel about their response.

Midtown requires that all new clients first participate in an New Client Consult. This call comes at no charge. Its purpose is to allow for proper screening of the therapist by the clients and vice versa. It’s important that both parties are comfortable working together toward the client’s goals. The majority of Midtown’s clientele are received via personal referrals.

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How do people pay for treatment?

Midtown prays for the day when public healthcare will place greater emphasis on psychological wellbeing. Currently, OHIP covered therapy programs exist, however, these are few and far between. Please speak to your doctor to know your options and to get a referral.

Until that day, Midtown operates as a private clinic, accepting individual, family and MVA clients on a fee-per-service basis. Some clients pay out-of-pocket and some have benefit coverage that reimburses them for some or all of the fees paid. Midtown’s business and organizational partnerships allow for preferred-rates.

For those who cannot afford private fees, our counsellors would be happy to talk through your options in the community. You’re also invited to call Here 24/7, our Region’s Mental Health and Addictions Number.

How do I know when I should get help?

That’s a complicated question with no right answer. Waiting for the just the ‘right’ time probably isn’t the best approach. Reaching out takes curiosity, bravery and commitment. If you think you might need help and are willing to consider getting help, then it’s probably as “right” a time as any. More importantly, don’t ignore that internal nudge saying you could do with a hand.

Some people find it helpful to talk it through with people close to them first, such as their friend, family member, doctor or faith leader. If you’re still not sure, we invite you to email or call us.

What’s wellness, psychosocial health, psychological health, mental health, mental illness and mental/psychological disorders?

These terms are often used interchangeably, although mean slightly different things.

Wellness is a general term for health in a holistic sense, including physical, psychological, spiritual, financial and other dimensions of a person’s health.

Psychosocial Health refers to the psychological and social health dimensions of health. They are inter-related as one influences the other.

Psychological Health and Mental Health mean the same thing. They refer to the functioning of your mind with respect to its moods, thoughts and resulting behaviour.

Mental Illness and Mental/Psychological Disorder also mean the same thing. They refer to having symptoms that meet criteria for a recognized medical condition affecting moods and thoughts that alter behaviours to the extent that they cause significant emotional pain, distress or dysfunction.

Midtown helps people with wellness concerns related to their mental health and other psycho-social factors. A diagnosis is not required, although we recommend you discuss symptoms with your doctor as he/she is your quarterback of public healthcare. Of course, what you share with your doctor is entirely up to you.

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