Psychotherapy is the practice of talk-based therapies to enhance mental health and well-being. Other common terms that you may be familiar with are counselling, mental health counselling, or simply therapy.
Psychotherapy is primarily carried out by Registered Psychotherapists or other professionals that are allowed to practice the controlled act of psychotherapy such as: psychologists, social workers, nurses, and doctors. Those who are not registered with a governing body in the above categories are not allowed to call themselves psychotherapists or provide psychotherapy services; in such instances, you would see the terms “counselling” and “therapy” used.
When you seek out the services of a Registered Psychotherapist, you can expect to receive ethical, competent quality care that is largely focused on the therapeutic relationship (College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO), n.d.). Psychotherapy is also largely conducted using evidence-based therapeutic modalities which you will not find with all forms of therapy.
An evidence-based therapy (EBT) is one that has been shown effective in “peer-reviewed scientific experiments”. Some common examples of EBTs are: Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy. With psychotherapy and the use of EBTs, you can expect increased quality of treatment and increased accountability.
Some key things to expect from working with a Registered Psychotherapist:
Ensure that the client’s well-being is at the forefront of the relationship.
Work with client(s) to gather relevant information that will support the formulation of a plan for psychotherapy.
Continuously evaluate outcomes of each session and the impact on overall treatment goal(s).
Practice safe and effective use of self throughout the psychotherapeutic process; and adhere to the standards of practice for the profession.
For more information about Psychotherapy visit our FAQ section on our blog.