Different types of mental health counseling services available: from clinical social workers, traditional in personal therapy, substance abuse counselors, marriage & family counselors along with e-counselors.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to mental health treatment. Mental health problems can vary greatly from person to person, even among those with the same mental health diagnosis. Treatment should instead be tailored to the individual.
Most people are familiar with the idea of mental health counseling services and what they entail in general, but they may not be aware of all the different types of mental health counseling services and various types of practitioners who offer these different services.
These are many separate types of counseling services that can help in a variety of ways: some are general as they can help with issues such as physical illness, loss, and relationships and more specific such as coping with anxiety and depression, bipolar disorder, parenting, marriage counseling and individual counseling.
Mental illness treatment can take place in a variety of settings (both face to face & off-line) and typically involves a multidisciplinary team of providers such as counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, nurses, mental health aides, and peer support professionals.
Clinical social workers
Clinical social workers are usually available in hospitals or in a hospital-like setting and will be able to make diagnoses as well as provide individual and group counseling. They also help with the study, treatment, and prevention of mental illnesses. There are also licensed social workers who work in these same settings but do not focus on diagnosing but are just as helpful in assisting patients to find appropriate referrals and resources.
Clinical social workers can also work in the private sector with the same abilities as a licensed professional counselor. A social worker with the clinical status has completed the necessary education and licensure as a licensed professional counselor has.
Substance use counselor
The substance abuse counselor is a mental health counselor specializing in treating patients who have a chemical dependency on drugs or alcohol. Whether counseling addicts or those who fear they will become addicts, a substance abuse counselor works with their client to help overcome dependencies and become self-sufficient.
During a session, you will explain your history with substances and the counselor will help you determine the root of your abuse problem. This often entails figuring out what your triggers are and what coping skills will work for you so that you can achieve and maintain sobriety. Your counselor will discuss options on how you can cope with your addiction, and they will come up with the best way for you to recover from it.
It is not uncommon for someone with an addiction to also have another mental health problem, referred to as a “dual diagnosis”. It is the current belief that anyone with a dual diagnosis should start by working on their addiction and getting stable before moving on to address other mental health issues.
Marriage and Family Therapists
Marital and family therapists are available to help those who are struggling in intimate or family relationships. They tend to focus on the change of dysfunctional patterns within these relationships in favor of a stronger connection with your partner or family member(s).
Families will also seek the help of marriage and family therapists if there is an issue in the family that cannot be resolved within the family, such as the conflict between children and parents, adjusting to divorce or remarriage, and a host of other issues. MFTs take a holistic perspective to health care; they are concerned with the overall, long-term well-being of individuals and their families.
In a recent study, consumers report that marriage and family therapists are the mental health professionals they would most likely recommend to friends. Over 98 percent of clients of marriage and family therapists report therapy services as good or excellent.
After receiving treatment, almost 90% of clients report an improvement in their emotional health, and nearly two-thirds report an improvement in their overall physical health.
Mental health counselors
Mental health counselors also referred to as licensed professional counselors who are trained in the assessment and diagnosis of a huge variety of mental health problems. Officially, these counselors are qualified to treat any of the mental health disorders, but most choose a specialty or a few different specialties.
You may want to start out by looking for a counselor who specializes in what you are seeking help for. For example, if you want help with depression, many counselors specialize in depression, while it could be a little harder to find a counselor who specializes in sexual dysfunction or eating disorders. These counselors provide a wide range of services including assessment and diagnosis of mental illnesses, treatment, prevention programs, crisis management, and much more. They also work in a wide variety of settings from clinics, hospitals, schools, and private practice.
Another option in mental health counseling services is to not find a face to face counselor you see in an office but to work with a counselor online also known as E-counseling. One site that offers such a service is BetterHelp.
Clients are matched with a therapist that is right for them and they can communicate with their counselor through messaging, live chat, phone or video sessions. All counselors listed on BetterHelp are vetted and verified to ensure they are a licensed mental health professional.
Benefits to online services include affordability, convenience, flexibility and availability since users can communicate online with their vetted skilled counselor at their schedule.