Psychological therapy is also sometimes referred to as talking therapy. There are a number of therapies which have been widely researched and have a good, reliable body of evidence of their effectiveness in treating a range of mental health problems. Because of the growing body of research evidence some of these therapies have now been recommended for use in guidelines produced by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) in England and the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) in Scotland. The therapy which has received the most publicity is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT). More recently the general public are becoming increasingly aware of another therapy - Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT). There are of course others.
COMMON PROBLEMS SEEN
The most commonly seen problems are listed below but other problems are seen:
Abuse (Sexual, Emotional, Physical)
Bereavement (Loss of a loved one - human or pet)
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
EVIDENCE BASED THERAPIES - TAILORED TO YOUR NEEDS
The Memory Assessment & Psychological Therapies service (MAPT) only offers therapies that are evidence based and those recommended by NICE and SIGN Guidelines for the specific problem you are receiving treatment. Treatments on offer include, but are not limited to, CBT and IPT.
No single therapy addresses all problems or suits everyone. So there is no point in using one therapy for all problems or with everybody seeking our help. MAPT will only offer you a therapy that is tailored to meet your specific needs.
Prior to therapy an assessment is carried out to help your Psychologist understand the many factors that trigger and maintain your problems. They also look at things that improve or make your situation worse. After this they will discuss their understanding of your difficulties with you and give you the opportunity to feedback on this. It is then that the treatment which best meets your needs is decided upon with you.
Not everyone who attends MAPT will require regular therapy sessions after assessment Also, for some a psychological therapy may not be the best option. In either case your Psychologist will discuss this with you and whenever possible will point you in the direction of where you may find more appropriate help.. It is not in anyone's best interests to attend for therapy sessions if benefits are unlikely to be gained. It would also be unethical for your Psychologist to see you just for the sake of it. It would be against their professional code of ethics and conduct, to which all registered Clinical Psychologists adhere.
Your first appointment is for a comprehensive assessment. This session lasts approximately 90 minutes.
During this session you will spend time discussing the types of problems you are having. This is generally the most difficult and upsetting session because you will talk about distressing or frightening aspects of your situation.. Often it will be the first time you have done so. The thought of it can stop people from picking up the phone to seek help. Some people feel too frightened, embarrassed or even stupid about their situation. These are all common feelings for someone coming to therapy. Experience shows us though that talking about your problems does become easier and less distressing as therapy progresses. Your Psychologist is there to support and guide you through it.
It can be particularly hard to talk about things such as sexual abuse and suicidal or distressing thoughts when you first meet a therapist. Psychologists understand this. You will never have pressure put on you to talk about something. You can talk about these issues in your own time. Some people never do mention their abuse. However, this is important information for your Psychologist to have because it gives them a better understanding of what may be underlying your problems and the opportunity to offer the most appropriate therapy to you. It is also important to know about suicidal and distressing thoughts so as you can explore ways of keeping yourself, and where appropriate, others safe.
At the end of the assessment your Psychologist will talk to you about the best treatment options for you and agree with you the number of sessions you would be required to attend.
All therapies offered at MAPT are time limited. The number of sessions you would require would be agreed with you before your treatment starts. This is not some random number but rather what has been shown to be effective in clinical research. Usually it is between 10-16 sessions depending on the therapy you have.
Treatment sessions last 50-60 minutes and are generally weekly. However, when you feel you are making good progress you may wish to go fortnightly. The last few sessions can even be monthly with the final one after a 2-3 month gap. This allows for increasing periods away from therapy building up your confidence in your ability to manage your problems on your own without the support of your therapist. It also prepares you better for when your contact ends.
FULLY QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED THERAPIST
At MAPT you will only be seen by a fully qualified, experienced, Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) registered Clinical Psychologist. You can check your Psychologist's registration by searching the register online at www.hcpc-uk.org.
You can also be assured that the Therapist you see for assessment will be the person who sees you for the entire course of your therapy.
Clinical Psychologists work to the Codes of Practice of their regulating organisation which has strict guidelines about client confidentiality. This includes rules about appropriate communication, storage and disclosure of information.
There are times when a Psychologist is obliged to act upon information you provide. However, when possible they would make every effort to discuss what actions were to be taken prior to doing so. For example, if you were to tell your Psychologist about any actual or potential harm to yourself or others they would have to take action to keep whoever is at risk safe. Another situation where a Psychologist would have to act would be if you told them about certain criminal offenses. Confidentiality will be discussed further with you in your first session.
Please contact Dr Pauline Thomson to discuss current fees. If you are claiming for your therapy through a health insurance policy please ensure it is a company with which we are registered prior to booking an appointment.
FURTHER INFORMATION / ARRANGE AN APPOINTMENT
If you would like further information or wish to arrange an appointment please contact Dr Pauline Thomson at MAPT.