Services: Psychotherapy

What is psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy, also known as “talk therapy” or “counseling,” is a type of treatment for emotional, mental, and behavioral problems. Therapy uses psychological means and techniques to facilitate change and is offered by professionals trained in these areas. This process helps you to identify and deal more effectively with difficult feelings, moods, thoughts, behaviors, life challenges, and other symptoms of distress.

All types of therapy involve development of a relationship with a trusted individual who can provide engagement, empathy and feedback to help you with self-awareness and understanding of needs and feelings.

It is often, but not always, used in combination with medications, and is usually most helpful when you are also incorporating other healthy lifestyle habits such as eating well, exercising, practicing good sleep hygiene, practicing mindfulness techniques and surrounding yourself with a positive support system.

What types of psychotherapy do we offer at Imagine Healthcare?

All Imagine therapists are accredited and licensed providers trained in various modalities of therapy interventions. Each brings a unique approach to working with clients and the approach they take is influenced by the needs of the client. 

There are dozens of treatment methods, and various therapies address specific categories of mental, behavioral, and emotional concerns. Many of these are recognized as “evidence based” and have been subjected to rigorous research. Classic psychodynamic models of therapy deal with unresolved, unconscious conflicts and processes which trigger and/or perpetuate emotional disturbance.

Cognitive therapies (e.g. CBT) focus on recognizing choices and thought patterns that create or worsen problems. Humanistic approaches emphasize a person’s individuality and encourage discovery and development of one’s “true self.” Interpersonal constructs work with clients’ relationships with others, conflicts, losses and communication. Behavior therapy (e.g. DBT) seeks to help people make changes in actions, managing emotions, and patterns of functioning. Certain trauma therapies deal with deep distress rooted in past experiences, and often include special techniques to work with physical symptoms as well as mental and emotional responses.

All of the above techniques can be used in combination with ketamine therapy to help our clients achieve their mental health goals.

What is Ketamine Therapy?

As the use of ketamine for mental health issues is still a relatively new field, you are likely to find different definitions of “ketamine therapy” online. At Imagine, we define it as using ketamine as a tool to help combat various mental illnesses. This can be performed in a variety of ways: 

  • Ketamine treatment involves administering low-dose ketamine via various routes, most commonly  IV (intravenous), IM (intramuscular), IN (intranasal), or SL (sublingual). Psychotherapy is performed outside of this treatment but is a vital component of integration and healing. 
  • Ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, or “KAP” is a specialized type of therapy which specifically helps a client process and work with perceptions, thoughts and feelings encountered in ketamine dissociation experiences, as well as integration/healing processes following the “dissociative events” themselves. Therapists trained in ketamine-assisted psychotherapy work in a targeted and focused way with clients’ journeys into their unconscious which often “overlap” with and relate to other parts of a person’s life related to mood, thought processes, choices, and behavior patterns.
  • Ketamine-associated psychotherapy works similarly to KAP, however the practitioner may not necessarily have extensive training specific to ketamine induced psychedelic experiences. Therapy is provided shortly after a treatment, or within 24-48 hours of the treatment. This period is when the brain seems most receptive and flexible, and neuroplasticity can be engaged in the most beneficial ways. 

In all cases, psychotherapists play an essential role in helping a client process what they experience while receiving ketamine and we do not recommend undergoing any form of ketamine therapy without also being under the care of a trained therapist.

How do you start ketamine therapy?

First, we want to make sure you are a good candidate for receiving ketamine. A thorough medical and psychological is the initial step. Occasionally, we may ask you to obtain bloodwork or other tests prior to initiating treatment.  Induction ketamine therapy involves a number of treatments using low doses of ketamine done within a several week period.  Traditionally, an induction series of six IV or IM treatments are given then clients are gradually “tapered” into a maintenance regimen. On average, clients return about every 4 weeks for maintenance boosters. The number of KAP sessions a client will need to achieve their mental health goals will vary but, in general, we believe that a minimum of three along with separate preparatory and integration sessions may be adequate.

Meet the IMAGINE therapy team…

  • Dave Evans, LCPC
  • William Farrand, LCPC
  • Elizabeth Selph, LPC