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Going to a Therapist

What Is Therapy?

Therapy is a way to get help with a problem. If you go to therapy, you'll have meetings with a therapist to talk.

The therapist will ask questions and listen to you. This helps the therapist know what you need. Going to therapy helps people learn to cope better, feel better, and do better.

Your parent or doctor might suggest you go to a therapist if you're dealing with a problem. Or it might be your idea — you might be the one to ask your parent or doctor to find a therapist to talk with.

What Problems Do Therapists Help With?

Therapists are trained to help people with all kinds of problems.

Therapists help people going through tough times like:

They help people with painful feelings like:

They help people with conditions like:

Why Do People Need Therapy?

People need therapy when they have problems they can't cope with alone. Therapy helps people sort out their feelings. It helps them work through problems. When they do this, they start to feel better and do better.

People need therapy for different reasons. Some people need to ease depression or anxiety. Others need it to improve their attention, learning, and focus. Some people need help with anxiety, worry, or fear. Everyone deserves help to deal with problems.

How Does Therapy Work?

In therapy, people learn by talking and doing. A therapist will share activities and ideas to build the skills a person needs. People learn ways to solve their problems.

Therapy builds positive feelings like confidence, courage, and hope. Therapists help people feel encouraged as they learn. They help people see the good in themselves and find their strengths.

What Happens in Therapy?

At first, your therapist will talk with you, ask questions, and listen to learn more about you. This helps your therapist understand the problem. Together you will make goals for what you want help with.

In therapy sessions, you might:

How Long Do People Do Therapy?

How long therapy lasts depends on your goals. Most of the time, a therapist will want to meet with you once a week for a few months.

How Can You Help Yourself?

If you're going to a therapist, here are ways to build on the work you will do:

Reviewed by: D'Arcy Lyness, PhD
Date reviewed: January 2018

Note: All information on TeensHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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