All your questions answered

Section 1
What is psychology?

Psychology is the study of human behavior, mental processes, and how they are affected and/or affect an individuals or group’s physical state, mental state, and external environment.

What does it mean to be a psychologist?
Psychologist is a generic term that refers to a person who has trained in one of the many fields of psychology. A psychologist is a scientist and/or clinician who studies the human mind and human behavior.
What are the major fields (specialties) of psychology?
Clinical psychology, educational , school psychology, and forensic psychology are often the most recognized fields. In addition to these there are many other general and specialty areas.
What are the most common problems for which people seek psychological help?
Over the past few years the problems have had a wide range but the majority would be depression and its effects, stress and anxiety, problems with eating and weight as well as relationship problems and addictions.
What are your areas of specialty?

We specialize in clinical psychology , we provide psychotherapy, counseling, and coaching with a concentration on areas including:

  • Combating stress as well as depression and anxiety
  • Overcoming panic attacks and other emotional problems
  • Handling male sexual concerns and female sexual concerns as well as fetishes
  • Dealing with addictions
  • Resolving fears and phobias and obsessive-compulsive behavior
  • Providing communication skills
  • Resolving co-dependent and marriage and family conflict
  • Behavioral and adjustment problems
  • Eating and food problems and weight concerns
  • Improving self-confidence
  • Relationship issues
  • Infertility and adoption
What else do you specialize in?

We also have the holistic healing and alternate healing modalities available with us. We help people to get over their issues by understanding the core of the problem and heal it rather than fixing it.

What is the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist?
Psychologists and psychiatrists both provide treatment to individuals with emotional problems. Psychology is both a profession and an independent scientific discipline. Psychiatry is a specialization within the field of medicine. Typically, a psychologist will have a Master or Doctorate degree and a psychiatrist will have a Medical degree. Psychologists help people control and change their behavior as a primary method of treating problems. Psychiatrists prescribe medication as a primary means of changing people’s behavior. Both psychologists and psychiatrists assume that complex emotional problems are likely to be the result of both biological and psychological causes.
Are you a Psychologist or a Psychiatrist?
I am Psychologist with a Doctorate Degree in psychology. I earned my Bachelors, Masters, and Doctorate degrees in the fields of psychology with its emphasis on psychology, human behavior, and the treatment of psychological problems. A psychiatrist is a M.D. or a D.O. who has earned a Doctorate in Medicine and then taken some specialized training in mental health issues.
How do I go about finding a competent psychologist?
While selecting a psychologist is similar to selecting any other professional, the relationship you will have with the psychologist is very personal. I advise you to check the psychologist’s credentials, including both training and experience. Make sure to talk to the psychologist directly before making an appointment. Ask questions about the services that will be provided, so you will not get something different from what you expected. See how comfortable you feel when you are talking with the psychologist.
Who can I contact to check on a therapist's reputation?
Major organizations are the American Psychological Association (APA), the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA), the British Psychological Society (BPS), and the American Psychiatric Association. The page Psych Associations lists every state psychological association and many national and international organizations.
How do you determine my diagnosis (problem)?
The standard procedure is for the mental health professional to conduct one or more interviews with the client and the psychologist may also have the client complete one or more psychological test(s). A diagnosis is then made from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR
How is mental illness different from a psychological problem?
The term mental illness is, historically, a medical term implying problems that may require medical treatment. The term mental illness can be used in reference to those psychological behavioral problems such as schizophrenia, other psychotic disorders, possibly bi-polar disorder, sometimes severe depression, and occasionally severe personality disturbances.
Some people have a false impression that psychologists only treat mentally ill individuals, and if you just have a problem with anxiety, an addiction, or “everyday problems” you should see someone else. As a consequence, some people may contact counselors, with much less training than a licensed psychologist, when they need help to resolve a psychological problem.
Rather than being concerned about the label, ask yourself if you have a problem that you are not able to deal with effectively. A psychologist can help you identify the thoughts, feelings and behaviors that are creating problems in your life and can help you resolve these problems.
How are counseling and psychotherapy different?
In reality there is little difference. However, technically counseling is generally seen as more short term in nature and psychotherapy is viewed as more long term treatment. Counseling is for life adjustment problems while psychotherapy is for psychiatric or psychological disorders. Counselors are frequently less trained that psychotherapists and in many states counselors do not have to be licensed. Note that many health insurance companies provide insurance reimbursement for “psychotherapy” but not for “counseling.”
How often are therapy appointments scheduled?
It is not possible to answer this question without considering the person and the nature of the problem. There are many approaches (or schools of) psychotherapy. The most frequently being cognitive therapy, behavior therapy, reality therapy and psychodynamic therapy. The frequency of psychotherapy appointments depends somewhat on the theoretical approach of the therapist and on the nature and severity of the problem. Frequency typically varies from 1-3 sessions per week, with the average being once per week. The length of treatment sessions varies with each therapist but is usually between 30-45 minutes long (mine are 60 minutes).
How many treatment sessions will be needed?
The length of treatment depends upon several variable including the nature and severity of the problem, the treatment goals selected, and the approach of the therapist. A national research study found that 50% of psychotherapy clients had made improvement within 8 sessions of therapy, and 75% showed improvement after 6 months of therapy. However, remember that improvement is not the same as successfully completing treatment. More serious problems, including recurring chronic depression, substance abuse, personality problems, and ongoing stress responses often require treatment for longer than 6 months.
Section 2
Is the information discussed in psychotherapy confidential?
In most states communication between a psychologist and their client is protected by law, comparing it to attorney-client privilege. However, there are generally recognized exception to this confidentiality protection. Psychologists have a “duty to warn” if they learn that a client plans to harm themselves or another person, and psychologists are also legally obligated to report child abuse. It is important to note that if you request insurance reimbursement for psychological services (or any other health service) confidential information is communicated to the company to process the claim and manage your account.
Do you have evening and weekend appointments?
I do not schedule regular appointments in the evening or weekends. But for my regular clients, I will meet with them in the evening or on a weekend if the need arises.
What is the difference between psychological therapy and coaching?

Psychological therapy is aimed at solving psychological problems and treating mental disorders. The professional who performs these tasks of diagnosis, prevention and psychological treatment must be registered and qualified to be a mental health professional, as in the case of Spain, is the figure of the General Health Psychologist.

Typical cases for a psychologist are related to the loss of a loved one, breakup of a relationship, work stress, anxiety disorders, obsessions, depression, addictions, emotional dependence, etc.

Coaching, unlike psychotherapy, focuses exclusively on achieving personal or professional goals, without applying any treatment associated with mental illness. Therefore, the coach does not need to be a psychologist or a health professional. However, the coach must have specific skills to accompany his client (coachee) in the process of personal change and decision-making.

The coach does not give advice, but rather establishes an optimal mental context so that his client can discover his own resources, make his own decisions and achieve his goals.

Typical cases in coaching have to do with professional challenges, seeking a new job or professional change, personal, family and work conciliation, communication problems at work, team management, leadership, etc.

What is the difference between a health psychologist and a psychiatrist?

A psychiatrist is a specialist medical doctor who is responsible for diagnosing and treating mental illnesses, mainly from a physiological perspective, which is why he/she relies heavily on the use of drugs, such as antidepressants, anxiolytics and antipsychotics. Medical intervention through drugs aims to correct a biochemical imbalance in the patient’s brain, but without forgetting the psychological variables that also play a fundamental role.

There are a number of mental illnesses whose treatment usually requires the intervention of a psychiatrist and the use of drugs, such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or serious eating disorders. This type of diseases may also require periods of hospitalization.

The health psychologist also focuses his work on mental health, but usually does not do so in a hospital setting (unlike the clinical psychologist) and, although he has knowledge of psychopharmacology due to his training, in Spain he cannot prescribe any medication.

The job of the health psychologist is to diagnose, evaluate and treat psychological problems. In order to do this, he/she uses therapeutic tools for the management and adaptation of thoughts, emotions and behaviors. Through multiple techniques and tools, the psychologist trains his client to modify dysfunctional behaviors, thoughts or emotions that are generating suffering.

As mental problems usually have a psychobiosocial explanation (that is, they have causes that involve the interaction of biological, psychological and social factors), it is common for psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, educators and other socio-health professionals to have to work as a team for the integral treatment of some cases.

Is online psychological therapy effective?

Online psychological therapy, or tele-psychology, is effective as long as it is conducted by an accredited professional in psychology and the appropriate techniques are applied in each case.

To obtain results, equivalent to those obtained in the face-to-face modality, it is necessary to carry out sessions in real time using a videoconference system, which allows fluent communication and the good establishment of the therapeutic rapport.

The online therapy based on videoconference has different characteristics compared with face-to-face sessions, including, inevitably, advantages and disadvantages. The main disadvantage is that there may be a decrease in verbal and non-verbal communication, which requires that the psychotherapist have specific skills handling the technological environment. The main advantages are the convenience of being able to access from home, the greater accessibility independent of the location and mobility of the client, lower cost and greater privacy.

Does online therapy work for any disorder?

No. Online therapy is not recommended to treat psychiatric psychopathology or serious disorders. However, it can be totally effective for psychological problems related to stress, self-esteem, anxiety, depression, grief, phobias, psychosomatic disorders, relationships, etc.

For the treatment of serious disorders, such as substance abuse and serious eating disorders, we recommend asking for help to specialized treatment centers.

Is online therapy safe? How is privacy and confidentiality protected?
Yes we make sure that the client details and case histories are totally confidential.
How long do the sessions last?
Psychotherapy sessions normally last about 50 minutes. However, in specific situations, the duration could be slightly shorter or longer. It is important to maintain a stable schedule, but it is also relevant that each session can be closed properly. For this, the therapist is in charge of managing the rhythm of the sessions and the client does not have to worry about controlling the time.

In the case of coaching sessions, the duration can be very variable. Our proposal is to do 90-minute sessions, since the emotional intensity is much lower than in psychotherapy and the frequency of the sessions is also lower.

How often do sessions take place?
The recommended frequency to obtain the best results in psychological therapy is weekly. By holding one session per week, the client has time to implement the changes agreed during the last session. Also, a week is not too long a time for the emotional effects and the memory of the work done to fade from one session to the next.

Although the weekly frequency is the most recommended during a psychological treatment, it is possible to adjust the therapy to other options, such as having two sessions per week or one session every two weeks. This type of frequency change in the sessions is made according to the specific needs of each case, prior agreement with the client.

In the case of coaching processes, the frequency of the sessions is much more variable, with appointments being established every two or three weeks. Coaching is aimed at achieving objectives and implementing specific changes, so it is usually necessary to leave enough time between sessions for the client (coachee) to make these changes.

What happens between one session and the next?
In the period between one session and the next, many things can happen and sometimes you may need to contact your therapist or coach. A messaging system is available to you through the online platform, so you can contact us at any time. In addition, you can use the email of your psychologist or coach to contact him when you need it.

Depending on each case, we will assess together if there is a need to carry out an extra session, advance the next appointment or take any other measure regarding the therapeutic or coaching process.

In the case of coaching processes, the frequency of the sessions is much more variable, with appointments being established every two or three weeks. Coaching is aimed at achieving objectives and implementing specific changes, so it is usually necessary to leave enough time between sessions for the client (coachee) to make these changes.

How long does the whole process take?
The psychological therapy processes have a highly variable duration, which depends on multiple factors, such as the severity of the existing problems, the therapeutic goals, psychosocial environment, etc. In general, two or three sessions are usually used at the beginning of the process to carry out a detailed evaluation of each case and establish the goals of therapy. Subsequently, the treatment phase focuses on implementing changes in the direction of achieving psychological well-being. Once the changes have been made, we propose a consolidation and maintenance phase where sessions can be carried out less frequently.
Section 3
What are the technical requirements for online sessions?

The video conferencing platform we use for sessions works on any device without the need to install any program. You only need to access, through the Internet browser, the online therapy platform and enter the username and password that we will send you in advance.

To ensure good image and audio quality, you must have a broadband Internet connection, like your home WiFi connection or access through a mobile device with a 3G or better network.

You can use a mobile (Android and iOS), a tablet, a laptop or a desktop computer. You simply need to give permission for the internet browser to use the device’s camera and microphone.

We recommend using headphones to enjoy better audio quality and greater privacy.

Do you need any technical knowledge?

No specific technical knowledge is needed to conduct the sessions online, you just need to properly configure the camera, headphones and microphone to be used on the device.

During the first session we will help you to make the necessary adjustments to ensure the good quality of communication.

From where can I connect to the session?

The benefit of online sessions is that they can be done from the comfort and privacy of your home, without having to go to a consultation. Any place with a good internet connection, quiet and no noise or distractions is suitable.

If we share the space with other people, it is important that we notify them before each session so that they respect our privacy and make sure there are no interruptions or disturbances.

How much do online sessions cost? How are they paid?
One of the advantages of online psychology is that online sessions are cheaper than face-to-face sessions. You can check the prices of the sessions online in the pricing section. The sessions are paid in advance, by bank transfer or other accepted methods. You can choose to pay each session independently or to buy a 5 or 10 session pack, for a lower price per session.
What do I do if I cannot afford the sessions?
Investing in our own psychological health and well-being is always a good investment, one that provides us with many short and long-term benefits. However, the situation may arise that, for various reasons, you cannot afford the cost of having a private psychologist or coach. In such a case, you can contact us or writ to us and we can see how we can help you.
Can an individual and therapist have a relationship outside of therapy?
Generally not and it is usually not recommended. Psychotherapy is meant to be a one-way street. The therapist knows a great deal about the patient but the patient does not know intimate details about the therapist. Because of this, the therapist often seems to have a greater power or influence over the individual, which could result in abuse or deception.
Does therapy involve physical touch?
The use of touch varies. Some therapists may pat or hug a patient as a sign of support or comfort (ONLY with the patient’s prior consent). However, physical touch is powerful and should never be sexualized. Kissing, excessive touching and sexual activity have no place in legitimate forms of therapy. While almost all therapists are ethical, a small minority exploits their patients. Any therapy involving inappropriate sexual behavior should be discontinued and the therapist should be reported to the state’s licensing board.
Is it okay for therapists and patients to date?
Dating or any sexual contact between a therapist and patient is always inappropriate. This includes seeking therapy from someone with whom you have been involved, with whom you had an intimate relationship with in the past, dating during therapy or starting a relationship after therapy has ended. Many countries have specific statutes regarding this behavior.
Will my therapist be angry if I switch to another practitioner?
The answer to this question should be no. Therapists are professionals who should have the best interest of their patient at heart. Any decision to switch therapists should be explored with the therapist. If your therapist gets touchy or angry at your decision, you can take comfort in the fact that you have made the right decision.
Section 4
Which is better, therapy or medication?

Both medication and therapy have been shown to be effective in treating mental illness. The type of treatment used depends on the nature of the problem. Generally, medication is often prescribed for conditions known to have strong biological components, such as major depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or panic disorder.

Research suggests that use of medication and psychotherapy together may be the best approach, especially for more severe conditions. The medication offers relief from symptoms, and psychotherapy enables the individual to gain knowledge about her condition and how to handle it. This combined approach offers the fastest, longest-lasting treatment.

Should I see a male or female therapist?

Individuals often wonder if they would do better with a male or female therapist. Research on therapist traits and therapy outcome has failed to identify any relationship between the two. Factors such as warmth and empathy are much more related to outcome than therapist gender. However, the nature of your particular problem as well as your own preferences may lead you to seek out a male or female therapist.

I’ve never talked to anyone. I’m used to handling things on my own. Aren’t people who go to therapy weak?

Not at all. People who ask for help know when they need it and have the ability to reach out. Everyone needs help now and then. You already have some strengths that you’ve used before, that for whatever reason isn’t working right now. Perhaps this problem feels overwhelming and is making it difficult to access your past strengths. In our work together, I’ll help you identify what those strengths are and how to implement them again in what is happening now.

What’s the difference between talking to you or my best friend or family?

The difference is between someone who can do something, and someone who has the training and experience to do that same thing professionally. A mental health professional can help you approach your situation in a new way– teach you new skills, gain different perspectives, listen to you without judgment or expectations, and help you listen to yourself. Furthermore, therapy is completely confidential. You won’t have to worry about others “knowing my business.” Lastly, if your situation provokes a great deal of negative emotion, if you’ve been confiding in a friend or family member, there is the risk that once you are feeling better you could start avoiding that person so you aren’t reminded of this difficult time in your life.

My partner and I are having problems. Should we be in individual counseling or come together?
If you are concerned about your relationship, and you would both like to work with me, I would initially work with both of you together. After this work, if one of you would like to continue in individual sessions, I could work with only one of you. It is not helpful to move from individual into couple’s work with the same therapist because of potential trust issues.
My child was diagnosed with a psychiatric condition. Can you help?
Yes, We will help you explore and discover resources for healing, with an emphasis on holistic resources that bring alternatives to psychiatry and avoid or minimize use of psychotropic medications with proper support and monitoring.
Do you take clients who have been prescribed with psychiatric medications?
Yes. One of our important goals is to work with clients to eliminate or reduce reliance on psychotropic drugs. All changes to medication will be undertaken under the supervision of a psychiatrist.
What are typical problems that you work on with teenagers and adolescents?
We help teenagers with executive functioning disorder. We have successfully helped teenagers with and without ADD as well as Asperger spectrum disorders learn how to get organized and how to derive more pleasure and fulfillment while growing emotionally and academically.