How do you decide which type of professional is right for you? To get a better idea of your own needs, it might be helpful to answer some questions about your needs, concerns, and preferences.

1) What are the main things I’m looking for help with?

Example: I need help working through issues with my family, I’m having trouble sleeping, I can’t stop getting angry all the time, there are problems in my marriage or relationship.

2) Am I looking for talk therapy?

If so, what kind of therapist do I need? Am I seeking someone who will listen to me, someone who will help me set goals, someone who will help me learn coping skills?

3) Do I have any concerns or questions about taking medication?

4) What has my health history been like?

Your health history may include experiencing recurring physical problems such as headaches or stomach pain, and habits such as drinking, substance use, or self-harm. Also include any previous treatment you’ve had with a psychologist, therapist, social worker or psychiatrist in the past and how it helped you.

5) What options do I have to pay for treatment?

You may need to call your insurance company or Medicare/Medicaid provider to find out what is covered. If you will be paying out-of-pocket expenses, you may want to put together a budget and see how much money you can afford to spend per week or per month for your treatment. (Also, you may want to ask your provider if they provide a sliding scale option based on your income.)