Jeannie Wells, L.P.C.

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Seeking counseling

When should you seek counseling?

From childhood through late adulthood, there are certain times when we may need help addressing problems and issues that cause us emotional distress or make us feel overwhelmed. When you are experiencing these types of difficulties, you may benefit from the assistance of an experienced, trained professional. Professional counselors offer the caring, expert assistance that we often need during these stressful times. A counselor can help you identify your problems and assist you in finding the best ways to cope with the situation by changing behaviors that contribute to the problem or by finding constructive ways to deal with a situation that is beyond your personal control.

National Institute of Mental Health Depression Booklet

Professional counselors offer help in addressing many situations that cause emotional stress, including, but not limited to:

  • anxiety, depression, and other mental and emotional problems and disorders
  • family and relationship issues
  • substance abuse and other addictions
  • sexual abuse and domestic violence
  • eating disorders
  • career change and job stress
  • social and emotional difficulties related to disability and illness
  • adopting to life transitions
  • the death of a loved one

"Good indicators of when you should seek counseling are when you're having difficulties at work, your ability to concentrate is diminished or when your level of pain becomes uncomfortable," says Dr. Gail Robinson, past president of the American Counseling Association. "However, you don't want to wait until the pain becomes unbearable or you're at the end of your rope."

"If someone is questioning if they should go into counseling that is probably the best indicator that they should," says Dr. William King, a mental health counselor in private practice in Indianapolis, Indiana. "You should trust your instincts."

Joyce Treasure, past president of the American Counseling Association and a professional counselor who has been in private practice for more than 20 years, recommends counseling when you:

  • Spend 5 out of 7 days feeling unhappy
  • Regularly cannot sleep at night
  • Are taking care of a parent or a child and the idea crosses your mind that you may want to hit that person
  • Place an elder in a nursing home or in alternative care
  • Have lost someone or something (such as a job)
  • Have a chronic or acute medical illness
  • Can no longer prioritize what is most important in your life
  • Feel that you can no longer manage your stress

"If you're not playing some, working some, and learning some, then you're out of balance. There's a potential for some problems," Treasure says.

Robinson points out you don't have to be "sick" to benefit from counseling. "Counseling is more than a treatment of mental illness," she says. "Some difficult issues we face in life are part of normal development. Sometimes it's helpful to see what you're going through is quite normal."





Contact Information

Jeannie Wells, LPC
The Carpenter's House
601 Bel Air Blvd.
Suite 409
Mobile, AL 36606
Office: (251) 476-9994
jeannie@jeanniewells.com


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