Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

About Therapy:

Why see a Registered Psychologist?

A psychologist is a professional trained in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of mental health issues. They have specialized knowledge in how we feel, think and behave, and how to encourage change in order to reduce distress, and improve overall psychological health.

Doctoral-level psychologists have the most extensive education and formal training requirements of any healthcare provider in the mental health field. They are required to have an undergraduate degree in psychology, minimum of 6 years of graduate training, thousands of hours of formal clinical training, and a formal full year clinical internship. They are then required to complete another postdoctoral year of supervised practice and pass examinations to show their competency to the College of Psychologists of Ontario.

As a regulated professional, psychologists are required by law to provide professional services in a competent and professional manner. They are also required to follow ethical principles and standards as defined in the Regulated Health Professionals Act, legislated by the Province of Ontario. They must also continually improve their knowledge and skills by participating in quality assurance activities.

What is Anxiety?

Everyone experiences anxiety from time to time. Although it can feel very unpleasant, it acts as an alert to potential threats to our well-being, and can also act as a motivator. However, if anxiety occurs too often, it can cause serious distress and impairment.

Anxiety is characterized by feelings of apprehension, nervousness, and worry about the future. Severe anxiety can lead to panic attacks consisting of rapid onset of intense fear or discomfort. Anxiety is often accompanied by physical symptoms, and can negatively affect relationships. It wears us out, and reduces our overall happiness and life satisfaction.

What is Depression?

Continual low moods, loss of interest and pleasure in normally enjoyed activities, or feeling empty may be warning signs of depression. Depression reduces your ability to connect with others, causes sleeping problems and a loss of appetite, and can leave one feeling tired. Depression leaves individuals more sensitive to rejection or criticism, which causes withdrawal from others. You not only experience more negative emotions, but you also lose touch with positive emotions as well.

What is Cognitive Behavior Therapy?

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is a type of psychological treatment that helps individuals understand the thoughts and feelings that influence behaviors. In other words, it focuses on the way people think and act. CBT helps individuals overcome problems by identifying and changing unhelpful ways of thinking and behaving. CBT is commonly used to treat a wide range of disorders including anxiety, depression, phobias, low self-esteem and addictions.

CBT is goal-oriented, present-focused, short-term, skill building, collaborative, research-based, and helpful in preventing relapse.

What is Dialectical Behavior Therapy?

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) treatment is a cognitive-behavioral approach that was developed by Dr. Marsha M. Linehan in the late 1980s. It was originally used to treat borderline personality disorder, and is now used for the treatment of other mental health disorders.

The therapy is designed to help people change patterns of behavior that are not effective, such as self-harm, suicidal thinking and substance abuse. You work towards identifying the triggers that lead to reactive states and increasing emotional and cognitive regulation.

DBT therapy is most effective when used in combination with group therapy. In the DBT group, specific skills are taught to help the individuals cope. These skills are broken down into four modules: mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation, and distress tolerance.

What is Emotion Focused Therapy?

Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is a short term, structured approach to couples therapy designed by Drs. Sue Johnson and Les Greenberg. The primary goals of EFT are to expand and re-organize key emotional responses, create a shift in partners’ interactional positions, initiate new cycles of interaction, and to foster creation of a secure bond between partners. Research studies show that 70-75% of couples move from distress to recovery and approximately 90% show significant improvements. EFT is also used with families and individuals.

What is Cognitive Processing Therapy?

Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) is as adaptation of cognitive behavioural therapy used to help clients recover from posttraumatic stress disorder and other related conditions. This therapy has four main components that include: learning about your PTSD symptoms, becoming aware of thoughts and feelings, learning skills, and understanding changes in beliefs.

What is Psychodynamic Therapy?

Psychodynamic Therapy is also known as insight-oriented therapy. It focuses on unconscious processes and the goal is to help the client become self-aware and understand past influences on the present. The therapist and client will examine unresolved conflicts that arise from past relationships.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness means paying attention to our thoughts, feelings and behaviours. It promotes greater self-awareness and recognition of how our thoughts and behavior affect our mood. Mindfulness helps you make thoughtful decisions based on your personal values, instead of reacting to your emotions.

What is Mindfulness Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Mindfulness Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a combination of cognitive therapy and meditative practices and attitudes. This therapy is used specifically for people who have suffered repeated bouts of depression in their lives.

What is Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Therapy?

Mindfulness Based Stressed Reduction Therapy was originally developed to help people with pain and other conditions that where difficult to treat in a hospital setting. This type of therapy aims at helping people become more mindful through a combination of mindfulness meditation, body awareness, and yoga. It is specifically helpful for individuals who suffer from chronic pain, hypertension, heart disease, cancer, and gastrointestinal disorders, as well as psychological conditions such as anxiety and panic.

What is Narrative Therapy?

Narrative Therapy is a collaborative and non-blaming approach that focuses on people being the experts of their own lives. This approach views problems as separate from people, and assumes that people have many skills, beliefs, and abilities that will assist in changing relationships with problems in their lives. Curiosity and a willingness to ask questions are important aspects on this approach.

About Assessments:

What is a Psychoeducational Assessment?

A psychoeducational assessment is often recommended when a child is struggling in school. Common issues include children having difficulty paying attention, being restless, not completing school work, having difficulties with organization, or performing below grade level. At home children may refuse to do their homework, complain about not liking school, or may appear anxious and sad. Psychoeducational assessments are used to better understand why children may be having these difficulties.

Psychoeducational assessments are individualized and can identify:

  • Academic strengths and weaknesses,
  • Learning disabilities,
  • Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder,
  • Emotional and behavioral difficulties, and
  • Intellectual development or delay.

Most psychoeducational assessments include an interview with parents, interview with child/youth, approximately five hours of testing, questionnaires completed by multiple sources, feedback, and a written report. Recommendations will be made on how to improve teaching strategies to help children reach their full potential.

What is a Giftedness Assessment?

This type of assessment focuses on a child’s intellectual and cognitive abilities. This test is used to determine a child’s eligibility for specialty programs, and examines the student’s use of language, nonverbal reasoning, processing speed, and working memory.

What is an Autism Assessment?

About Our Clinic:

How do I make an appointment?

Simply call our office and talk to our administrative staff. Carrie or Sumeet will take you through the intake process and set up your first appointment. Or you can send us a message on our contact us page. Faxed referrals are also welcomed by health care professionals. Please fax to 905-878-3621.

Do I need a referral from my doctor?

We always welcome referrals from health practitioners, although it is not necessary to obtain an appointment. However, some extended health-benefit providers do require a referral before providing reimbursement.

What should I expect at my first appointment?

Your first appointment is usually dedicated to assessment and treatment planning. This will involve information gathering that will help obtain a better understanding of you and your current situation. An overview of a treatment plan that is tailored to your individual needs will be discussed and specific goals will be outlined.

How long will therapy last?

This is a reasonable question and is difficult to predict. This depends on a number of factors including your goals, the severity of your symptoms, the strength of the relationship with your therapist, the level of effort put into change, as well as external factors in your life.

Depending on your specific needs and goals, therapy can be short-term, to deal with a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with recurrent life patterns of thinking, feeling or behaving which require the development of greater understanding over time.

Are your services confidential?
Client confidentiality and privacy is fully assured. Information will not be released without the consent of the client or a legal representative or guardian. Psychologists are required to break confidentiality under exceptional circumstances, which will be carefully explained during your first visit.

What are your clinic’s hours?

We offer appointments Monday to Friday from 9:00am to 8:00pm, and Saturday from 10:00am to 4:00pm. Administration staff is available Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 5:30pm.

Do you prescribe medications?

As registered psychologists we do not prescribe medications.

Are your services covered by OHIP?

Psychological services are not currently covered by OHIP. However, many insurance plans and benefit packages provide partial or full coverage for our services.

How does the payment work?

Payment for service is due at the end of each session and you will be provided with a receipt that you can submit for reimbursement to your insurance company. We currently accept cash or cheque.

What is your cancellation policy?

Clients are required to provide 24 hours notice of appointment cancellations or changes. The full session fee will be charged for missed treatment session where such notice was not provided.