What is involved in a consultation for psychodynamic psychotherapy?
Psychodynamic psychotherapy is an approach to therapy that is based on psychoanalysis. Like psychoanalysis, psychodynamic therapy emphasizes the pursuit of self-understanding. However, psychodynamic therapy is less intensive than psychoanalysis, requiring a less substantial commitment of time and resources.
In psychodynamic psychotherapy, we consider the inner “dynamics” of the mind, including aspects that are not normally part of conscious awareness but which can still contribute to psychological distress.
In a consultation for psychodynamic psychotherapy, we aim to get a sense of whether you are curious to pursue this kind of self-understanding, and whether the psychodynamic approach might be helpful for you in addressing psychological distress you are experiencing.
What is involved in a consultation for psychoanalysis?
Psychoanalysis is an approach that aims to generate a depth of self-understanding that is generally not possible using less intensive psychotherapies. The psychoanalytic model is based on the observation that there are many aspects of a person’s mind and motivations that lie outside of conscious awareness.
The psychoanalytic approach differs in emphasis from the cognitive psychological/CBT approach. Whereas the cognitive approach focuses on rational processes and their breakdown, psychoanalysis takes an interests in a person’s inner life, including fantasies, wishes, and dreams. This makes psychoanalysis by its nature a uniquely exploratory process.
The psychoanalytic process is facilitated by the use of the couch, and the regular and frequent scheduling of sessions.
In a psychoanalytic consultation, we want to consider whether you are curious to pursue the kind of self-understanding that psychoanalysis aims to generate, and ways in which this understanding might help with any symptoms or psychological distress you experience. We also want to know whether you will feel comfortable devoting time to a psychoanalysis at this point in your life.
Is psychotherapy in Toronto covered by OHIP?
My psychotherapy services are not covered by the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP), which means that individuals pay out-of-pocket. This is standard in Toronto and the rest of the province for non-physician psychotherapists. Clients may be eligible for reimbursement of some psychotherapy fees from extended health plans, but should check ahead of time see whether their plan will cover their psychotherapist’s services. Therapy may be viewed as an investment in oneself, and engaging in a therapeutic processes typically requires some financial commitment.
Do you prescribe medications?
I do not prescribe medications. Individuals who wish to discuss medications should speak with a physician, such as their general practitioner.
Is my information kept confidential?
As outlined by the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO), confidentiality is a cornerstone of psychotherapy, and is required given the sensitive personal information that patients disclose. Strict standards of confidentiality are adhered to.
What is the difference between a Registered Psychotherapist, Registered Psychologist/Psychological Associate, Registered Social Worker, and a psychiatrist?
Clinicians with any of these types of designation can provide a range of psychotherapy services. One difference is that each type of clinician belongs to a different College. A Registered Psychotherapist (which is the designation of most Toronto psychotherapists affiliated with The Psychotherapy Practice) has met requirements for admission of the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario. These psychotherapists have an “RP” designation. Psychologists and psychiatrists also offer psychotherapy. These practitioners often conduct psychotherapy within a framework which includes a formal diagnosis of the patient’s suspected mental disorder (in North America, this usually involves employing the Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM]). Psychiatrists, as physicians, may prescribe psychotropic medications to their patients.