Mental health issues are sometimes dismissed or misunderstood, and often compared to physical ailments such as cancer or disease. However, mental health is a critical component for any adult, adolescent, or child to function and have a meaningful everyday life and, in the case of adults, a good work life and marriage. Therapy services are everywhere and ready to help with stressful topics such as a struggling marriage or ongoing depression, and potential patients need only reach out to reap the benefits. Sometimes, stigmas against having these problems or getting therapy may prevent people in need from finding this help. Overcoming these misunderstandings may sometimes be an extra step to take for finding talk therapy or other types of psychotherapy.

The Prevalence of Mental Health Issues and Treatment

In today’s American society, mental health often goes untreated or under-treated. In fact, it is believed that fully half of depressed adults do not even seek treatment, and ever since the year 2012, it is estimated that some 16,000,000 U.S. adults had at least one major depressive episode. Depression can also be expensive for society. Since depressed individuals have a decrease in productivity and overall health, this ailment costs American society around $80 billion per year. Similarly, marriage trouble can often lead to divorce or extramarital affairs, and in any case, marital trouble can also lead to depression. The good news is that therapy services are there to help, if patients are willing to reach out.

On Depression

Depression is sometimes dismissed as someone being generally unhappy or lonely exaggerating their feelings, but in fact, this ailment requires proper therapy and counseling to deal with. Depression is a clinical condition with numerous well documented symptoms aside from overwhelming sadness or despair, such as excessive or lost sleep, a severely affected appetite, loss of interest in hobbies and socializing, weight gain or loss, and even suicidal thoughts or attempts. What is more, this condition is highly individual in nature, and different therapy services may be needed for different patients.

Psychotherapy for depression can take different forms, as described at Very Well Mind. Behavioral activation is a form of therapy that gets the patient engaged in activities and getting positive interactions from the nearby environment, along with other pleasurable activities. Cognitive behavioral therapy, meanwhile, will use various means to address cognitive distortions and behavioral patterns that are aggravating and perpetuating depressive feelings, and similarly, interpersonal therapy is used when relationships are causing the patient’s depression. Sessions will focus on improving the patient’s problem solving skills and communication skills. Finally, if the patient’s depression affects others in his or her household, family therapy is used, and the roles that family members may play in the depression are examined. Interpersonal relationships are also focused on so treatment can be reached.

Marriage Counseling

Some therapy services are available for those whose marriage is suffering. In can be highly effective; research shows that just over 98% of couples who got therapy or counseling reported receiving good or excellent help, and 97% of those surveyed reported getting help that they needed. A licensed marriage and family therapist may also be 20 to 40% cheaper than seeing a general psychologist.

According to Mayo Clinic Couples who seek this therapy can vet their potential therapist first, such as checking out office hours, rates and fees, the number and duration of sessions needed, and the counselor’s experience and education. Problem solving, open communication, and the ways to discuss differences rationally can all be applied at therapy, whether one or both members of the marriage attend. Sessions may be tense of involve shouting, but the counselor can act as a referee, and if one patient has a mental condition or drug problem affecting the relationship, the counselor can refer them to additional help. Depending on the relationship and the problems present, the total sessions can be short, or months of work may be needed.