What will therapy be like?
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. Your psychologist will ask questions paced to suit you, and they’ll take notes to ensure they have all the information they need to support you. 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. 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.
How frequent are appointments?
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.
How many sessions will I need?
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 about 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 refresher or ‘maintenance’ visits.
Do I need to do anything before my first appointment?
You can see a Psychologist either with a referral or without a referral. Having a referral means that you may be able to claim a Medicare rebate for part of the psychology session fee. To find out whether you’re eligible for a Medicare rebate, you’ll need to contact your Doctor and book an appointment to discuss your difficulties. When booking the appointment, it might be helpful to let them know that you’d like to talk about a Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP) as you may need a longer appointment that usual. If appropriate, the Doctor will prepare a Mental Health Treatment Plan (MHTP) and provide you with a referral to a psychologist.
If you don’t wish to claim a Medicare rebate, you don’t need a referral. Simply contact us to discuss an appointment.
Once you’ve made an appointment , we’ll ask you to complete an online registration form and email your referral and Mental Health Plan to us (if you have one). Our Services and Fees provide more information about referrals, rebates, and private health insurance.
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.
How do I book an appointment?
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.
How long is a psychology appointment?
Sessions run for 50 minutes. Sometimes your first session may take a little longer – up to 60 minutes.