FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I know what type of therapy is right for me?

Affinity Therapy Services offers many types of therapies. We begin with a 50- or 70-minute evaluation to understand what type of therapy will likely be most effective for you. The type of therapy is one piece of the treatment. Our strong belief is that your connection to the therapist is equally important.

How do I know if Affinity Therapy Services is right for me?

 

Of course, you can look at our bios and come to us with your preference. We are happy to see patients age 12 and up for medication management and therapy. At Affinity Therapy Services we believe in a holistic approach to therapy. We honor your beliefs, religion, and have a strong commitment to treating each person with compassion.

 

What is the difference between a psychotherapist, psychologist and a psychiatrist?

 

One essential difference is that a psychiatrist can prescribe medication and a psychologist or psychotherapist cannot. A psychiatrist

  •     has clinical experience in the treatment of medical illness in addition to training in mental health
  •     Completed a three to four-year residency in psychiatry
  •     Child and Adolescent psychiatrists complete a two-year fellowship after residency
  •     Trained in hospital and clinical settings in the use of psychiatric medication and psychotherapy
  •     Our psychiatrist is focused on clarifying diagnoses and treatment through medication management and lifestyle modification when appropriate

APsychotherapist can have a number of specific degrees but all focus on therapy. Our therapists

  •     Have master’s degrees
  •     Completed two years of supervised clinical training
  •     Have obtained further credentials in specific techniques and disciplines, such as DBT, EMDR, and the treatment of addictions

Psychologists

  •        Have earned a PhD after 8-10 years study in psychology
  •        Completed a one-year clinical internship
  •        are focused on therapy and the science of the brain

 

When and why does Affinity Therapy Services recommend medication?

 

Affinity Therapy has a psychiatrist (MD) who has extensive training in mental health medication prescription and management. We pride ourselves in guiding people through the process of figuring out what works for them. Medication can be one of many treatment options available. We might recommend medication if it is most:

  •         Likely to help
  •         Likely to improve results of psychotherapy
  •         Cost effective

 

What can I expect to happen in Affinity Therapy Services’ initial evaluation?

Affinity Therapy Services believes in a 50- or 70-minute evaluation focused on your history to help us evaluate and identify how to help you feel your best. It is most productive when first-time patients come with the following:

  • Significant events in your life that have contributed to the issue(s) that brings you to us
  • What you want to achieve
  •         Feelings and/or behaviors around issue(s)

If you have taken psychiatric medication in the past, please take some time to write down your medication history. This should include:

  • The medication and reason why you took/take it
  • The dosage
  • The effects
  • Any side effects
  • Length of time you took/take the medication
  •  If you stopped, why?

 

Is a diagnosis important?
Sometimes! Our job is to work with you to understand past patterns and experiences. Sometimes these patterns and experiences are most important in their uniqueness to you and your experience. Sometimes, however, these patterns are familiar to clinicians from our training and from previous clients we have treated and then fall under the heading of a diagnosis. Some diagnoses are harder to treat and some easier, but it is often the case that a diagnosis can be very helpful in explaining current difficulties and guiding efficient and effective treatment. Sometimes a diagnosis is clear and obvious but often we think of a diagnosis as provisional in that we use it as a model to guide treatment but only continue to feel that the diagnosis is accurate if this proves to be a helpful model for understanding a patient’s experience and helpful in guiding treatment. We do our best not to over diagnose or reduce a complex situation to a simple one, but we also do our best not to under diagnose and thus leave a situation more complicated than it need be.