I want to get into treatment at Epoch, how do I get started?
When will treatment begin?
How much will treatment at Epoch cost?
What do I need to bring to my first appointment?
I have never been in counseling before, what should I expect?
If this is your first experience in counseling, you are not alone. It is normal to have questions and even be unsure about what you will experience. Clients are encouraged to discuss any concerns or questions they may have with their counselor early in treatment. However, as a start, the following information should help to give you a little more insight into the process of counseling.
Treatment at Epoch will likely include a combination of individual, group, and possibly family counseling session. Your first clinical session will be your intake assessment, which will be one on one with a counselor. This is a fairly structured session, where the counselor will gather information and background in various areas of your life in order to assess your needs and accurately place you in the appropriate treatment program and with a counselor that can best address your concerns. The counselor who you see for intake may or may not be your counselor for the duration of your treatment at Epoch. The intake session usually lasts anywhere from one to two hours. After your intake assessment session you will be assigned to a counselor and scheduled for your first group or individual session.
Most of our clients are seen in a group setting with occasional individual sessions. A group session usually consists of one or two counselors facilitating a group of six to 12 clients. These sessions promote growth by developing support, modeling healthy relationships, and gaining insight by sharing with others who are similar in some way. Although education about various topics is provided, these sessions are different than “classes,” and clients are encouraged to be open to sharing and listening to other members in the group. Group sessions usually last 75 to 90 minutes.
A client may have sporadic individual sessions or this may be their primary mode of treatment. Individual sessions are similar to intakes in that they are one-on-one in format, but they are much different in their structure. Although some individual sessions may include treatment planning or structured activities, they are usually more of an open format directed primarily by the client’s needs, concerns and priorities.. The client is encouraged to present their experiences, feelings, concerns, etc., while the counselor works to develop understanding and guide the client through the process of change. Individual sessions usually last 45 minutes to an hour.
In addition to group or individual sessions, clients may choose to include a partner, family or other person from their support network in their sessions. These would be considered family sessions and are very similar to individual sessions in duration and format, except to include the additional person(s).
As with any treatment, substance abuse counseling has both benefits and potential risks. Risks sometimes include uncomfortable feelings such as sadness, guilt, anxiety, anger, frustration, loneliness, and helplessness. Sometimes, a client’s problems may temporarily worsen after beginning treatment. Making changes in personal beliefs, behaviors and relationships can be difficult and sometimes scary. On the other hand, substance abuse counseling has been shown to have many benefits for individuals who undertake it. Over time, therapy often leads to significant reduction in feelings of distress, increased satisfaction in interpersonal relationships, improved physical health and self-care, greater personal awareness and insight, better problem-solving and coping skills, resolutions to specific problems, and a renewed sense of hope. While there are no guarantees of what you will experience, research shows that clients with substance use disorders who remain actively engaged in treatment for at least 90 days have better outcomes than those who receive no treatment or those who leave prematurely.