Do you only work with anxiety disorders?
About 80 percent of first-time clients come with anxiety as the primary issue. Of course, it is usually accompanied by a range of other issues, especially depression, with the hopelessness, lack of energy, sleep disturbance, poor concentration, and myriad of other things that go with it. For many clients, when anxiety is no longer a major focus in their life, we sometimes continue to work together on broader issues of self-change.
Is it true that you have a special interest/experience with sleep problems?
Yes, I once worked in a major sleep disorders center with people experiencing the full range of sleep problems. I continue to be especially interested in insomnia and feel that too often sleep medication is used as the only intervention. In fact, there is a large body of research consistent with my clinical experience suggesting that there is a strong learned component in most cases of insomnia. For example, worrying about not sleeping is often a major factor and can usually be addressed directly in therapy.
You talk a lot about Cognitive-Behavior Therapy. I tried that and it wasn't very helpful.
It is important to know that most recently-trained therapists have had some exposure to CBT and use it in their work to different degrees and with different levels of skill. In order to be effective, it must be done skillfully, consistently, and in a way that fits each person's problems.
Do you use other types of therapy as well?
Yes, while I primarily do short-term symptom-focused therapy, I also do longer-term, more broadly-focused therapy, depending on client need. While my primary theoretical orientation is CBT, I use a new form of it that incorporates mindfulness and acceptance strategies, which is referred to as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). I also use methods from Positive Psychology as well as always trying to see the person from a family systems perspective. Much of my satisfaction in doing therapy comes from working with a broad range of clients from different cultural, religious, and world viewpoints. It is very important to me to respect these differences.
How long does "short-term" therapy usually take?
It does not depend so much on how long you have had the problem as on other factors. One of the most important is the intensity of your own work related to the problem between sessions. I can usually give you my general sense of this at the end of the initial evaluation.
Do you accept insurance? How does it work?
Please note that I am not on any managed care/insurance panels. I am happy to provide an invoice for each visit to my office with all the information necessary for you to submit to insurance companies if you have coverage for "out-of-network" providers like myself. This coverage is sometimes nearly at the same level as for in-network providers, but more typically is not. You may want to contact your insurance company by calling the number on the back of your card. I suggest asking the following questions:
- Do I have mental health coverage?
- Is there a deductible? Is it combined for physical and mental health? Have I met it for this year?
- How many sessions per year are covered?
- How much do you pay for an out-of-network psychologist?
If you are unable to keep an appointment, please give me 24 hours notice or the usual charge will be made for the time reserved for you.
How can I contact you?
You can give me a call and leave a voice mail. I will try to reach you within 24 hours, Monday through Friday. You can also send an email or simply fill out the form on this page.