FAQ

What Happens When I submit my Contact Form or Consultation Request?

Within 36 business hours someone should be in contact with either by email or telephone.  We try our hardest to match you with your requested therapist, but open appointments are based on therapist availability.  If we offer you the opportunity to see a different therapist it more than likely is because your requested therapist is unavailable.  If no one is available at the time of your request we will send you a link to join our waiting list.

What Should I Expect On My First Visit?

It’s normal to experience some anxiety leading up to your initial appointment, we know that it’s not an easy thing to do. We applaud you for taking the initial steps to get help.  We go to great lengths to maximize your comfort and help you leave sessions feeling a sense of relief.  During your first visit your therapist will review the counseling process, initial paperwork, and talk with you about your major concerns and goals.  Your therapist will also go over with you limits to confidentiality and scheduling consistent sessions.  They will also take the time to answer whatever questions you may have, so please ask whatever is on your mind/heart.

What if I Have Anxiety About My First Session?

It is completely normal to be nervous or anxious before attending a therapy session, especially your first one. Many people do not know quite what to expect from their first session and feel some ambivalence or apprehension about beginning the process of counseling. For some, the feelings of anxiety last beyond the first session. This anxiety is understandable because people often share and explore things in therapy that are extremely personal and important to them (i.e. feelings, experiences, relationship issues, and other concerns) and this may trigger some feelings of vulnerability or may overwhelm.

Is My Information Kept Confidential?

Your information is protected by the same rules and guidelines as any other health information. Generally speaking, the information you discuss during therapy sessions is legally confidential, and the therapist cannot disclose the information without your written consent.

 If you want us to give/receive information to/from someone, we will have you authorize in writing the release of protected health information.  There are some limits to confidentiality which are outlined in your initial paperwork, and will also be discussed during the first visit with your therapist.

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What if Me and My Therapist Do Not Click? What Can I Do?

The therapeutic relationship is the foundation of treatment. It takes time to establish a therapeutic rapport and trusting, collaborative working relationship. Empower yourself to ask your therapist questions and/or voice any concerns that you have about your treatment.  If you feel that the process is not working for you, please let your therapist know.  Trust us, they will not be offended.  Additionally, if you would like to try another therapist at Imara Counseling please call our Practice Manager at (240) 581-1502.  If not, let your therapist know and they will help you locate a referral to continue treatment.  We cannot stress this enough, your therapist will not be offended by your openness and honesty.

How does Therapy Work and For How Many Sessions?

Your therapy plan will be tailored to you and your needs. Some people complete short term therapy in as few as twelve sessions. Others have more complex issues that may require longer term therapy. It is not unusual to be engaged in therapy for six months to a year to even longer for some.

Typically, you will meet with your therapist on a weekly basis. Sessions are typically 55 minutes in length.  Depending on your goals and progress bi-weekly appointments may be considered.

What can I Expect in a Counseling Session?

A session usually lasts 55 minutes. We recommend weekly sessions. Between sessions, clients are encouraged to think about and process what was discussed. At times, you may be asked to do something specific outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records or a journal. For the therapy to “work,” you must be an active participant, both during and in between the therapy sessions.

Do You Have A Cancellation Policy?

We require 24 hour’s notice if are unable to keep a scheduled appointment. Our cancellation policy reflects our commitment to you and respect for your time a well as our therapists. A $100.00 Late Cancellation/No Show fee applies to all appointments not cancelled before 24 hours.  You will need to contact your therapist directly by email or telephone to cancel your appointment. 

Can I Use My Medical Insurance?

Yes. We are committed to promoting accessible and affordable services. Mental health is equally – and in many cases more – important than physical health. You have health insurance to help subsidize the costs of your health care for a reason.  Presently we are only paneled with CareFirst/Blue Cross Blue Shield for in-network benefits.  We do provide superbills for clients who have other insurance carriers that would like to utilize their out of network benefits. 

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What if I am Having a Mental Health Emergency or Having Suicidal Thoughts?

If you are having a medical emergency or are experiencing a mental health crisis, please call 911 or visit your local emergency room.  You may also call the Maryland crisis line by dialing 211 (option 1).  You may also call the suicide prevention lifeline 800-273-8255.