Making a decision to begin therapy can be both a nervous and exciting experience. Here’s a few commonly asked questions as well as information that’s specific to my practice and general to psychotherapy, both of which are useful to know when seeking counselling services.
How do I know if I need therapy?
Guitars are designed to go out of tune, whether you play them or not. When it goes out of tune you don’t throw it away or think something’s wrong with it. You simply re-tune it! When a musician plays a guitar that’s out of tune we don’t think they suck at playing music, we think they’d sound even better with the guitar in tune!
Our brains work the same way and are designed to go out of tune…whether you use it or not! So if you’ve noticed feeling stuck (thoughts about self, thoughts about others, negative emotions, sensations in the body) then your brain may be out of tune. Let’s get that re-tuned to be calm/optimal so you can enjoy and do more of what is possible and has benefit!
Check out my blog post on this topic HERE
What therapy approaches do you use?
I specialize and focus in using brain-based and transformative therapy approaches. While I have extensive training in traditional therapeutic models, I specifically use methods from Rapid Resolution Therapy® (RRT) and Emotional Pain Intervention® (EPI).
RRT is an innovative approach using multi-level communication and specialized tools to resolve emotional disturbance and maladaptive behaviour. Because RRT changes how the unconscious mind processes information, improvements are automatic and lasting. Created by Dr. Jon Connelly, RRT is a fast, painless, and lasting approach for therapy. To learn more please visit Rapid Resolution Therapy.
Founded by Dr. Elizabeth Michas, EPI® uses neuroscience and transformational psychotherapy to produce rapid results through brain changing conversations. Through education of the brain/mind/body, EPI® empowers you and gives you a new ’makes sense’ understanding of what’s actually going on and what can be done now (even decades after trauma has happened) with intervention to stop the emotional pain, clear and update trauma memories or beliefs. To learn more please visit What is Emotional Pain Intervention (EPI®)?
How does hypnosis work?
All hypnosis is SELF hypnosis.
It’s better to understand what hypnosis is by understanding what it isn’t. It isn’t being “asleep”, or “put under”, or “unconscious”. Have you ever watched a scary movie and jumped at the scary part? THAT’s a form of hypnosis! You didn’t decide to jump and respond when the creepy music and scary images came on scene, yet you were awake and aware while it was happening! Or how about after you’ve driven home and wondered if you stopped at the lights or the stop sign and didn’t even realize you were home already. THAT’s a form of hypnosis! You weren’t asleep while driving. You were conscious and alert and aware that there are other deeper levels of our brain that work automatically and non-consciously. These are considered hypnotic states of mind. Mediation and mindfulness are all forms of hypnosis, people just don’t call it that.
Using hypnosis during sessions will help to further the transformation process as it works with all facets of mind for multi-level processing, getting your brain updated and working to your best advantage.
Does OHIP/Extended Health Care benefits cover your services?
Individual and family psychotherapy services are not covered under OHIP, which is why a doctor’s referral is not required to begin services.
Many Extended Health Care benefit plans offer coverage for therapy services, however may specify what type of provider you may receive services from. With the proclamation of the Psychotherapy Act 2007, Registered Psychotherapists (RP) are now acknowledged as qualified service providers by all insurance companies, however may not have yet been added to your benefits plan. Please contact your insurance company to inquire if RPs are an approved therapy provider.
If you are a member of a group benefits plan and RPs are not identified as a mental health service provider, please contact your Plan Administrator to request this be added to your benefits package.
For more information on what you can do to further support adding RPs to insurance providers, please visit rptherapybenefits.ca
Are your services eligible to be claimed as medical expenses on my tax return?
Yes, Registered Psychotherapists appear on the Government of Canada’s list of “Authorized medical practitioners for the purposes of the medical expense tax credit.” Please check with your tax advisor or accountant with further questions related to claiming this expense for non-reimbursed payments.
What’s the difference between a Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Social Worker, and Psychotherapist?
Psychiatrists have medical degrees and are doctors who specialize in mental health. They are able to assess and provide mental health diagnoses, prescribe and monitor medications for mental health, and provide psychotherapy services. Services with a psychiatrist are covered under OHIP.
Psychologists have masters and doctoral degrees in psychology and provide specialized testing and assessments to diagnose and treat mental health. They are unable to prescribe medications and some, not all, of their services are covered under OHIP.
Social Workers and Psychotherapists are similar and are both able to provide counselling and therapy services. The difference between the two is related to education and training. Social Workers are well versed in understanding systems and community factors within society and the impact this may have on an individual and their functioning, while Psychotherapists are well versed in understanding human development and applying counselling theories to address change. In Canada, neither Social Workers nor Psychotherapists can diagnose mental health concerns and are not covered under OHIP.
Regardless of which provider you choose, please ensure they are a licensed/registered provider.
What are your fees?
All sessions are $226, with tax included, regardless of the length or type of session. So whether the session is 30 minutes or 90 minutes it’s always the same rate. Payments can be made via credit card or e-transfer and a receipt will be emailed for your records at time of payment.
How do I make an appointment?
Is my session private/confidential?
Yes, privacy is taken very seriously to maintain your confidentiality of receiving services. For in person sessions, all appointments are scheduled with time in between to ensure privacy of clients and scheduled on days when no other medical providers are present.
In person office visits also provides a waiting room for those that may accompany you on your visit. Great care is taken to ensure the room is well insulated allowing your session to be private.
Great care is also taken to ensure privacy and confidentiality of online sessions through the use of a secure video platform meeting all PHIPA requirements.
I can't make my appointment. What should I do?
If you must cancel or reschedule your appointment, please provide at least 24 hours advance notice. It is policy to charge a fee of $200.00 +HST if you do not keep a scheduled appointment or cancel less than 24 hours in advance, unless it is agreed that circumstances did not permit advance notice.
What if I have a complaint?
As a RP I am accountable to the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) for the quality of care I provide and for my professional conduct. I value all feedback and am invested in ensuring our time together is beneficial to you and will make all efforts to resolve any complaints. Should additional support be needed please feel free to connect directly with the CRPO.
Are video sessions effective?
Yes! I know there’s some doubts about video sessions. Believe me, I had them too! And now, I’m loving it! So are my clients! Some actually prefer it because they feel more comfortable at home, there’s no commute, no having to find a place you’ve never been, and they can show me all sorts of things they have at home which makes them feel more connected to me.
Connecting through video sessions is just as strong as connecting in person. You feel connected to me reading my website right? Well imagine me actually talking with you online! I promise, I’m just as funny there as I am here 😜
What protective measures are you taking during Covid-19?
Due to Covid-19, all sessions are currently being provided online through a secure video platform. These measures are will remain in place through 2021. Any changes or updates will be shared via the website and through the monthly newsletter which you can sign up for here.
Do you provide services outside of Ontario?
As a Registered Psychotherapist within Ontario, I am regulated by the CRPO and can provide counselling and psychotherapy services to clients within the Ontario region as well as within provinces that are unregulated. You may find a status list of regulations for each province HERE.
For those in another regulated province or outside of Canada, brain-based coaching services may be of benefit. To learn more and schedule a consultation click HERE.
In the media
Jaime Armstrong, RP revisits the role of digital by Digital Main Street
Pushing the mental-health conversation: Clearview first responders challenge each other to raise awareness
Listen to Podcast
Winner of Wasaga Beach Reader’s Choice Awards 2020
Winner of the Midland Reader’s Choice Awards 2019