Benefits of counselling highlighted

Can help during times of crisis and change
  • Deborah Condon

At least nine in 10 people believe it is a good idea to see a counsellor or psychotherapist if they are struggling with their mental health, a survey has found.

The survey was carried out on behalf of the Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (IACP), which is highlighting the importance of seeking support as part of Mental Health Week (October 7-13).

The IACP is urging people to consider counseling or psychotherapy if they need professional support during times of crisis or change. Therapists can offer help in a number of areas such as depression, stress, relationship problems, bereavement, infertility and addiction problems.

"We are definitely seeing a greater acceptance of the value of counselling and psychotherapy in the general public. The IACP encourages those who wish to take that first step towards counselling to call us or visit our website. We have qualified members throughout the country who can provide you with assistance," explained IACP chief executive, Lisa Molloy.

The IACP offers the following advice to people who may be considering seeing a counsellor or psychotherapist:

-Be prepared to see more than one counsellor/psychotherapist. You may not gel with the first one that you meet
-You need to be aware that counselling/psychotherapy will not "fix" your problems right away. It is a process that will require your commitment
-A client's first contact with a counsellor/psychotherapist will usually be by telephone to arrange an appointment
-At the initial appointment, the following is normally agreed - the client's situation/issue, the frequency of therapy sessions, the duration of therapy, the importance of confidentiality, therapist's fees.

If you are interested in finding a therapist in your area, please call (01) 230 3536 or log on to the IACP website here.

The survey of over 1,000 adults was carried out by Behaviours & Attitudes on behalf of the IACP in March of this year.


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