The initial evaluation is a 60 minute session in which we collect a detailed psychological and medical history and evaluate you for anxiety and mood disorders. We inquire about any other information that would be relevant to your treatment. We determine your target goals in therapy and formulate a treatment plan that would be most suitable for you. We answer any questions you may have about cognitive behavior therapy and address any concerns. The evaluation is a trial session to assess if you are a good fit for our treatment. If we agree that there is a goodness of fit with regard to our rapport and our ability to meet your target goals, we agree to move forward in treatment. If it is determined we are not a good fit, we will refer you to a doctor or facility who can better meet your therapy needs.
Follow-up sessions are 45 minutes once a week and involve focusing on strategies which will assist you in meeting your target goals. This may involve identifying, challenging and restructuring irrational thoughts that contribute to your fears or negative mood. You may be assigned certain readings or homework or be asked to keep daily logs to assist you. We also pinpoint any maladaptive behaviors that trigger your emotions and help you find healthier alternatives. The number of sessions you will need is largely dependent on the number of goals you set and the pace at which you are able to implement the techniques we offer you.
Throughout this process, we give each other regular feedback about treatment. We encourage you to let us know what you feel is most helpful to you and what you think needs improvement. We measure your progress weekly and want you to be comfortable in expressing to us if a treatment method is not working as well as you’d like. We modify our approach, tools and goals as needed to keep you moving forward. We will also provide you with routine positive feedback about how you progress in therapy. We offer appropriate redirection if we feel you are swaying off course. Our objective is to keep you focused and goal-directed in a time efficient way.
Once you have achieved your goals, we reduce the frequency of sessions to biweekly or monthly visits. These sessions involve relapse prevention tools that allow you to graduate treatment with the confidence that you can sustain your improvements over time. We also encourage booster sessions which are random check-in points throughout the year that allow us to reassess your progress and make sure you continue on your healthy path.