Are you having a tough time getting over a breakup or the death of a loved one? Do you often find yourself feeling completely overwhelmed or detached from reality? Have your social relationships begun to suffer from your absence or emotional turmoil? If any of these things sound familiar, you may want to consider seeing a psychologist.
Psychologists, more commonly known as therapists or counselors, are mental health professionals that specialize in human behavior. They are highly experienced in helping people to improve negative symptoms associated with mental health. They primarily use a technique called, psychotherapy, or talk therapy, to learn more about their patients, explore hard topics, and eventually encourage personal growth. There are many benefits of seeing a psychologist, here are some of the top benefits:
Allows You to Explore Ideas in a Safe Space
Psychotherapy gives you an appropriate place to explore problem areas in your life. Everything you say is confidential, so you can express things honestly without the worry of offending or hurting someone. Therapy also allows you a safe space to process your emotions about a particular person or situation. Depending on your situation, a psychologist may ask you about the past or present trauma, the death of a loved one, medical illness, difficulties with everyday life, or about your mental disorder.
Provides a New Perspective
Often times when something is bothering us, we tend to see things from one side only. Especially in situations where we feel we have been wronged or in cases where depression and anxiety distort things, it may be hard for us to process the reality of the situation. Seeing a therapist provides you with a fresh, unbiased evaluation of the situation. Because they are new to the situation, they are often able to identify things that you missed. Depending on the situation, this can help you process things and move forward.
Identify and Eliminate Bad Habits
Everyone has bad habits. While therapy cannot completely eliminate these habits, it can help you to recognize them. Once you recognize them, you can work on determining the trigger for the behavior, and try to reduce its effect on you. This will help reduce the frequency of practicing bad habits. At the very least, you may be able to identify when you need to take a step back from something or need to ask for help.
Help With the Future
Working on yourself in the present will inevitably benefit your future. Therapy can help you with future events by helping to mentally prepare for them. This is especially helpful if the event is expected to be excessively stressful or emotional. Discussing the event ahead of time allows you and your therapist to come up with a plan and appropriate exit strategies if needed.
Changes in the Brain
Psychotherapy can actually change the way you think and the way your brain works. According to the American Psychiatric Association, changes in the brain are noticeable after people undergo psychotherapy, especially in those with depression, panic disorder, PTSD, and other mental disorders. Research has found that most of these changes are about the same as in people who take medication to manage their mental health. To learn more, see “Is Medication Better Than Therapy?”
As you can see, psychology is highly beneficial for people looking to improve their mental health. Psychologists use psychotherapy to explore ideas and emotions in a safe space, provide new perspectives, identify and eliminate bad habits, help with the future, and change the brain. All these benefits can improve not only your mental health but your overall quality of life.
Dr. Miller is trained in Adult, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She is also trained in Anesthesia and Pain Management. Because of her broad experience, Dr. Miller is uniquely qualified to treat psychological trauma, depression and anxiety that can occur as a result of injury or disability. For more information, schedule a consultation at NJ Family Psychiatry & Therapy.