If you are considering seeking help for your depression, you may feel anxious about what the process will look like. It's understandable—seeking therapy for your depression is a big step, and it can be hard to know what to expect.
Here's a breakdown of what your first session of depression therapy might look like.
The Assessment Process
Your first session will likely involve an assessment of your current situation and any past experiences that have contributed to your mental health. During this assessment, you will be asked questions about your mental health history, lifestyle, family background, and any other information that may be relevant. This process can take some time, so come prepared with as much information as possible. To get the most out of this assessment, you need to be honest and open about your feelings and experiences. This is a safe space to discuss any difficult topics, so don't be afraid to express yourself.
Discussing Goals and Treatment Plan
Once the therapist has had a chance to assess the situation, they will talk to you about setting goals and developing a treatment plan. This plan may include medication or other interventions such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) or interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT). Your therapist should explain all the options available to you so that you can decide which type of treatment works best for you.
If you choose to pursue therapy, the therapist will help you set goals and create a plan for how to get there. This will involve discussing your triggers, understanding and managing your symptoms, and achieving a healthier mental state. You might also discuss self-care techniques like relaxation exercises and healthy lifestyle habits. The aim is to equip you with the skills to enable you to take control of your depression and manage it in the long term.
Along with implementing an individualized treatment plan, you will likely benefit from regular check-in sessions with your therapist. These sessions allow you to evaluate how things are going and make any necessary adjustments to ensure the treatment is effective. For instance, if you're struggling with certain aspects of the treatment, your therapist can help you reframe your thinking or offer other coping strategies. You need to feel comfortable discussing any worries, doubts, or problems that arise during the process. These check-ins will also allow you to celebrate any progress you've made and will help keep you motivated.
Contact a local depression therapy service to learn more.