According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Covid-19 led to an increase in adverse mental health conditions — so much so that 1 in 5 Americans were estimated to suffer from at least one mental health issue in 2020.
With even more people seeking the help of licensed mental health experts to deal with prolonged isolation, heartbreaks, political and economical uncertainty and racial issues and more this year— mental health professionals are in high demand, and it will likely take some time and effort to find the right psychologist or licensed therapist with an opening, within your budget and experience treating your particular issues.
On the other hand, it may just be the best time to see a therapist for the first time — thanks to the movements to normalize seeking help for mental health conditions in the last few years and online counselling sessions that make it easy to avail those services in the privacy and comfort of your home.
As the kind of psychologist you choose and how you connect with them can influence your growth, we wrote this guide to help you figure out how to find the right psychologist in Santa Monica, including where to look for them and how much they cost.
Before you can pick the right therapist or psychologist for yourself, you need to narrow down on your options. There are several ways to look for psychologists and therapists that you can trust:
Just like the rest of us, therapists too hang out with like-minded people — and it’s likely that the person they recommend will have similar world views as them. In that way, your friend and their therapist can be great resources for finding a psychologist you’ll click with.
While you look for a psychologist in Santa Monica that you can connect with, don’t forget to get a better understanding of the kind of services they offer.
Depending on the psychologist, they may specialize in one-to-one sessions or group sessions (such as ones that treat substance abuse problems).Here are the types of services a licensed psychologist typically provides:
If you’re dealing with a lot of work-related stress, your employer may provide a session for psychological consultancy. Be sure to check with your HR Manager for more details about your company policy on mental health.
You need to make the call for the psychologist you wish to work with long-term once you have narrowed your search for psychologists or therapists in Santa Monica. The choice of a psychologist or therapist can largely influence your growth and recovery — so we recommend spending some time choosing the right fit for yourself.Here are some ways to decide:
The term “Counselor” or “Therapist” can apply to people holding licenses such as LMFT, LCSW, psychologist, etc. If you’re looking to work with a professional psychologist who is is qualified to make psychological assessments, they need to be certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP). Mental health therapists who are trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), couples therapy, EMDR, anxiety, depression, etc, need to be either certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology or licensed with the Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS).Be sure to also check their area of specialization. Not every therapist is equally fit to treat all mental health conditions — so asking about the specialization really helps to make sure you get the best care for yourself. For example, you might be interested in therapy for trauma, anxiety, depression, or relationship issues so you should ask your therapist or psychologist about their specific experience in your concerns.
You can verify their credentials, disciplinary history, and certification on ABPP website or the BBS website.
When it comes to handling mental health issues, you need someone with experience.
A psychologist or licensed therapist with training and experience in treating similar patients may help you get on the path of recovery more quickly and help you manage those issues more effectively.
Things you want to consider:
You need to be comfortable with the psychologist of your choice because your counseling section will require that you open up about your issues and vulnerabilities.
Oftentimes, people may prefer speaking to someone of their own gender or sometimes they prefer someone of a different gender. There are also psychologists who cater more to a particular gender than the other and who specialize in transgender and non-binary clients. Be sure to consider your preferences before you choose one.
Reading reviews from past clients can provide an insight into what you should expect from using their service. Patient satisfaction surveys usually ask for patients’ reviews of their experience in different service areas like wait time, appointment scheduling, environmental condition, and staff hospitality.
This may give you a better understanding of how patients rate the psychologist, how well the patient’s issues were attended, and how long they spent with patients. Those reviews may also help you unearth if they have a history of client mismanagement or an unruly behavioral attitude.
Although not all psychologists do a short phone consultation before the first session, just taking note of your comfort level while booking an appointment can give you a lot of insight. Did they seem impatient? Were you comfortable speaking to the person on the other side of the phone? Did you feel attended to and cozy? Don’t worry about your psychologist’s feelings in this regard — you don’t want to see someone who you don’t like. Feeling accepted, safe, and understood are imperative to creating a context in which to heal so trust your gut.
It may not be such a bad idea to make a first appointment with the psychologists you have narrowed down to, and decide after. During your first meeting with a psychologist, notice their response and communication style.
Did they answer your questions effectively? Were they welcoming enough? How did they respond to your questions? If you are a person of color, you may also want to ask them questions about their understanding of cultural and racial issues. The first session should be about you discovering the therapist just as much as it is about them exploring your issues. Feel free to ask as many questions as you need to feel comfortable in your choice of a psychologist.
Here are the standard rates for therapy services in the US:
Types of Therapy
Average Cost Per Session Without Health Insurance
$70 — $150
$30 — $80
$70 — $250
$100 — $250
$100 — $200
Free — $100
$50 — $150
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
My LA Therapy deeply cares about its mission to help people find more freedom, joy and clarity in their lives and strives to offer a range of mental health services under one roof. In an effort to make therapeutic help more accessible to people in Santa Monica who really need therapy but do not have the financial means to afford it — we offer impact services which range between $0-50.
For regular therapy sessions, we can either match you with a masters-level associate therapist or a licensed therapist or psychologist. We charge $75-$175 for sessions with associate therapists holding masters’ degrees, and $200-$300 for sessions with a licensed therapist or psychologist. Please note that you may be covered by your health insurance for sessions with our therapists, so regular session costs may not reflect what you will actually pay. Be sure to check with your insurance provider for more details.
Looking for reliable licensed therapists near you? Let My LA Therapy’s dynamic team of therapists help.
The mental health recovery process requires a few steps along the way. Psychologists and therapists work with each patient to create objectives and set up the perfect counseling model.
Our customized counseling plan includes (but is not limited to): individual sessions, group sessions, corporate sessions, or one activity. Give us a call or contact us to make a booking today.
Ready to level up your life?