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FAQs about counseling and finding child and teen therapy in Harrisonburg, VA.

Teen therapy in Harrisonburg VA
Teen Therapy in Harrisonburg VA

So, you have searched on Google and maybe Psychology Today and found a few therapists that might work for your family in Harrisonburg, VA. You see the terms therapist, counselor, psychologist, psychiatrist, and coach along with a list of letters behind their names. What do these letters mean? You ask “How am I to know which is the right fit for my child or teen who needs therapy?”

Having questions about the different types of therapists and counselors is normal. After all your child or teen is one of the most important people in your life and you want to make sure they find the help they need.

What is a therapy? 

When someone says they are a “therapist” there can be some confusion about what this means. “Therapy” is a treatment or course of action to help provide healing or wellness. A physical therapist provides treatment, instructions, support, or prescriptions to help heal physical injuries. A Psychotherapist provides treatment for mental health issues. They provide emotional support, guidance, and education to promote emotional and behavioral wellness.  A psychotherapist who works with children or teens in Harrisonburg, VA would be referred to as a “child therapist” or “teen therapist”.

Teen Therapy in Harrisonburg VA
Melissa Deaton Cook LPC * Teen Therapist @spiralrootscounseling

What is counseling?

We frequently hear the word “counselor” in many different situations. For example, A “camp counselor” is typically someone who guides and ensures the safety of children and teens at day or summer camps. These counselors may be older teens or college-age youth. Sometimes the word “counselor” may be loosely used to designate direct care staff at residential schools or treatment centers. Schools have “guidance counselors” who help students navigate issues in school or help them consider different options and paths after graduation.  A “Pastoral Counselor” is someone who uses spiritual and religious information to provide support and guidance.  A “Licensed Professional Counselor” has a master's degree in counseling, has had a specific number of hours of supervision, has passed a state licensing exam, and has been approved to provide counseling or therapy to individuals or families. A Licensed Professional Counselor provides emotional and behavioral support and guidance for life and mental health issues.   In short, the word counselor typically refers to someone who provides information, guidance, and support. A teen or child counselor in Harrisonburg, VA would provide child therapy and teen therapy. 

So are counseling and therapy in Harrisonburg, VA the same thing?

The terms “therapy” and “counseling” are used interchangeably. In this instance, they both refer to providing or receiving help with an emotional, mental, or behavioral issue. The important thing to consider when looking for a therapist or counselor is to look at their specialties and ensure that they are licensed, or licensed eligible in the state where you live. Research indicates that the best outcomes in counseling are directly related to the client-therapist relationship, not the specific degree of the therapist.

Teen Counseling in Harrisonburg VA
Spiral Roots LLC provides child & teen therapy

Should I hire an LPC, LCSW, LMFT, or Psychologist for my child or teen? 

 An LPC (licensed professional counselor), LCSW (licensed clinical social worker), LMFT (licensed marriage and family therapist), LMHC (licensed mental health counselor), or Psychologist can all provide counseling. They all learn the foundations of counseling or therapy but the overall view or theoretical perspective of study can be a little different. For example, counseling degrees may focus more on theories and interventions surrounding an individual, social work degrees may be a little more focused on social justice and social systems theories, and family therapists focus more on the complexities of family systems. Psychologists have a deeper knowledge of testing that provides direction and understanding of treatment for interested parties. Once a clinician obtains their license, they begin to develop more specific skills that fit their interests. A good therapist will continue to learn techniques that match the theory, age group, presenting problem, or interests that they resonate with. This and personality are what truly distinguish the diversity in counselors or therapists. A child or teen will have better outcomes with someone who specializes in child or teen therapy.

child therapay and teen thearpy in Harrisonburg VA
Child and Teen Therapist in Harrisonburg VA

Melissa Deaton Cook is an LPC (Licensed Professional Counselor) with over 30 years of experience. She integrates play, expressive arts, music, movement, sand, and nature, into the typical cognitive therapy (talk therapy) in her work with children, teens, and families in Harrisonburg VA.

Your young one is your heartbeat. You deserve to know that they will be well supported and guided by whoever works with them. Both your concerns and their pain are real. They deserve to be seen, heard, and believed in.  Not all therapists work the same. I believe it takes special skills to work with children and teens. Finding the right therapist for your child or teen will increase a positive outcome and help them grow and flourish. You and your family warrant a child or teen therapist who can best support your child or teen during this difficult time. I hope this helps you understand a little more about the wording and the different types of therapists in Harrisonburg, VA so that you can make the best-informed decision for your child or teen.

 Call Melissa today at 540-416-1628 for child or teen therapy in Harrisonburg, Va.

At Spiral Roots LLC, Melissa Deaton Cook LPC specializes in child and teen therapy in Harrisonburg, VA. If you are looking for a child or teen counselor, call 540-416-1628 or email today for a free consultation. Openings are currently available. Learn more and follow Melissa.   @spiral roots counseling

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