It’s common for some people to feel nervous about their first session. Your Psychologist will welcome you and will work to help you feel more comfortable. You might want to tell us if you’re feeling nervous. We’re open and honest in our communication and welcome the same from you.

The purpose of the first few sessions is for you to get to know your Psychologist, and for them to gather information about what you’re struggling with, your symptoms (if any), and a bit about your family, lifestyle, work, school etc. Clients usually feel more relaxed and relieved once they’ve shared their difficulties, and understand that they have someone who is ‘on their side’.

After a session or two, we’ll work out what’s led you this point and we’ll start working towards your therapy goals. Each time we meet, we’ll check-in and talk about any difficulties you might have been having and any progress. Then we might work on some practical strategies or sometimes your Psychologist might share information with you. The idea is to build your knowledge so that you have a ‘toolkit’ of things that you can practice and experiment with between sessions.

To start with, appointments are usually weekly or fortnightly. We’ll discuss this together at your first session. Then, the time between sessions will lengthen depending on your progress.

It’s difficult to know how many sessions you’ll need because everyone’s situation is unique. Your progress also depends on your willingness to experiment with ‘therapy tools’ between sessions.

It’s typical for clients to have up to 10 sessions. Some need less, others more. Some clients also value being able to check in with their Psychologist periodically after they’ve completed treatment for a ‘maintenance’ visit or just to chat.

Obtain a referral and a Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP) from your Doctor if you’d like to claim a Medicare rebate for some of the session fee. You may need to book a longer appointment with your Doctor to complete the MHTP. Ensure that you bring your referral and the MHTP with you to your first session. Alternatively, you can email them to Oak. Our Services and Fees provide more information.

If you don’t wish to claim a Medicare rebate, you don’t need a referral. Simply contact us to discuss an appointment.

Tips for your first appointment:

Be prepared. Before your session, think about how to describe “what’s wrong,” and how this is impacting you. Some clients find it helpful to write down the reasons they’re seeking help.

Think about what you want to achieve by coming to therapy.   We’ll work together to set some therapy goals during the first few sessions.

Simple! Contact us if you’d like to make an appointment. We will discuss suitability for treatment, and organise an appointment.

Once you’ve booked an appointment, we’ll send you an email asking you to complete some paperwork.

Sessions run for 50 minutes. Sometimes your first session may take a little longer – up to 60 minutes.