How do I know if my child needs therapy?
If you have been considering seeking help for your child, chances are that you have a sense that something is going on for them. Trust your instincts, you know your child better than anyone else in the world!
If your child has had any recent drastic changes in mood, behavior, appetite, or level of interest in hobbies or activities, it may be a good idea to seek out the opinion of a qualified healthcare professional.
Many parents start by talking to their child’s pediatrician, please know that pediatricians are not mental health professionals and cannot diagnose or treat any mental health condition single-handedly. If your pediatrician prescribes medication for your child, they should also be recommending counseling or therapy.
How often will my child need to attend therapy?
Each child has unique needs and the frequency of sessions can vary. For the most part, we know that weekly sessions or even multiple sessions per week can be most beneficial. If scheduling issues prevent the child from attending therapy on a weekly basis, your therapist will work with you to develop a plan that will meet you and your child’s needs.
Will I need to attend therapy with my child?
While I may not require that you attend and participate in every scheduled appointment your child has, I do expect parents to be involved in their child’s treatment. This may look like individual sessions with you alone, sessions with you and your child, and possibly inviting other members of your household to attend therapy sessions. Many of the changes that you’d like to see for your child involve you implementing recommended strategies and techniques in the home environment. There is not a single therapist out there that can help your child in only one hour per week, you are a vital part in your child’s treatment outcome.
How do I schedule an appointment?
What will our first appointment be like?
Most major health insurance plans cover outpatient and inpatient mental health services. It is your responsibility to know what your insurance covers including deductible, copay, and number of visits allowed per year. While I am only currently “in network” with Aetna and Tricare, I can provide you with a superbill to submit to your insurance company to see if they will reimburse you at the “out of network” level of your plan.
Please be advised that if you choose to use your health insurance for mental health services, I am required to give your child a diagnosis for payment of services provided. This diagnosis goes on your child’s insurance record and can be considered a “pre-existing condition” if you change insurance plans. There is also some evidence to suggest that having a mental health diagnosis on your insurance record can prevent individuals from getting health and life insurance in the future. Using your insurance is 100% your decision, I strongly encourage you to speak with your health insurance plan about your benefits and limits of coverage. You are 100% financially responsible for any services not covered by your insurance (e.g. if pre-authorization or referral is not obtained when required by your plan).