What can I expect from therapy?
I strive for a comfortable and casual collaboration with my clients. I am trained in many evidence-based (researched and effective) therapy models. I don’t strictly adhere to one over another; there are so many effective techniques available that we can match you up with tools that fit you best.
How well does therapy work compared to medication?
According to the APA, therapy done with an effective therapist is better in the long run and is longer lasting than using medication alone. It is more cost-effective, and leads to fewer relapses of anxiety and mild to moderate depression, when compared to pharmacological treatment.
Therapy can be positively life-changing, but many people find a combination of medication and therapy as the most effective treatment. If you feel this may be best for you, talk with your doctor or a psychiatrist about medication options.
What is whole brain therapy, and how is it different?
Traditionally, therapy has been almost exclusively conducted in an office setting, where the client talks about what is bothering them while the therapist offers guidance where needed. This is referred to as “talk therapy,” and can be very effective. This is still how most therapists provide therapy.
However, through brain imaging technology, neuroscience has expanded our understanding of how brains process and store information. As a result, we know emotions are processed and held in a different part of the brain than verbal language, so strong emotions can be extremely difficult to discuss. Whole brain therapy increases communication between parts of the brain.
How long until I feel better?
There are many factors involved in how quickly a person heals from mental and emotional pain. Many people report feeling better after the very first session. Most clients are ready to be discharged in under six months of weekly sessions. Monthly after-care sessions can be helpful to maintain gains made.
How much do sessions cost?
My fee is $100 per clinical hour (50 min).
A diagnostic evaluation is $200 for up to 2 hours of work.
A custody evaluation is $2,000 for up to 20 hours of work.
Do you take insurance?
Accepting insurance is not in my clients’ best interests. Here are some excellent reasons to pay privately:
- A diagnosis is not required. You won’t receive a label that doesn’t fit.
- The course of treatment is agreed upon by the therapist and client, not by what the insurance company will pay for.
- Services can be provided to you at the highest level of quality and confidentiality.
Many insurance companies will reimburse for out-of-network providers. Check with yours first.
Do you have a sliding scale?
Not at this time. If you need to select a provider based solely on financial cost, I’d be glad to provide you a list of community mental health resources.
When do I have to pay?
Payment is due at the time of service. A credit card is kept on file which can be used, or you can pay with a card not on file or in cash (direct change only).
I have a crazy schedule. Are you flexible?
Flexibility is one of the main reasons I offer telehealth therapy, which appeals to people with a busy schedule and those who feel more comfortable talking by phone, video, or chat. I’m happy to find an arrangement that works well for both of us.
What's the point of a therapy dog?
There are many documented mental, emotional, and physical benefits to having an animal around. With a trained dog used in therapy, however, the benefits are magnified.
- It feels good to pet something soft, warm and furry. The sense of gentle touch is an important one to human biology. It lowers heart rate, deepens breathing, and calms the nervous system.
- Having dual attention-part of your attention in the present, part of your attention on other things-helps keep you from getting caught up in painful thoughts/feelings/memories.
- Humans are accustomed to dogs’ body language and behavior; if they are tensed and alert, we know before we can tell with our own senses that something out of the ordinary is happening. If they are calm and relaxed, we know that the environment is safe.
Grace is training as a therapy dog-which means she comes to work with me for my clients’ benefit-but she is a family pet when she is off-duty.
How do we get started?
The first step is to call and schedule an appointment. I’ll speak with you briefly to answer any questions you might have and email you a link to the client portal where you create an account and fill out the intake paperwork (this takes about 10-15 minutes).
Or, you can schedule your own appointment by clicking the “schedule an appointment” button, create an account to the client portal and choose an appointment time from the ones available. You’ll be sent intake forms to sign electronically.
During the intake appointment we spend some time getting to know each other, we go over the presenting issue(s), and we discuss how future sessions might unfold. I’ve had many clients say they started the first appointment feeling nervous and apprehensive, and left it feeling heard and reassured!
That all sounds great, but what if I'm still not sure?
That is absolutely fine. Take your time and contact me when you’re ready. You’re also welcome to call for a free 15 minute consultation.
1009 A W St Maartens Dr
St Joseph, MO 64506
Video/Chat/Phone sessions by appointment only during COVID-19