Tips & Advice
How can someone become a crisis-intervention counselor?
To become a crisis intervention counselor, a person typically needs a bachelor's degree in social work, psychology, or counseling. The American Institute of Healthcare Professionals is one organization that provides respected certification. A crisis intervention counselor's job might involve manning a suicide-prevention hotline or working face-to-face with patients who need counseling.
A crisis plan is a document created by (or on behalf of) someone who has had past mental-health difficulties, and it is used to provide a roadmap for treatment if the individual encounters a crisis situation. A crisis plan lists preferred, acceptable, and unacceptable treatment medications, and it also lists preferred treatment facilities. This document is usually signed by the person who created it, and it can also be signed by witnesses and an attorney.
How does crisis intervention work?
Crisis intervention can take many forms. In some cases, family members come together to help the individual cope with the crisis. In other cases, professional counseling is needed. Crisis intervention is mostly focused on providing resources and care that can help minimize someone’s response to a triggering event, and the strategies used are meant to provide short-term relief.
What is considered a crisis situation?
A crisis situation is one that causes trauma that leads to acute mental or physical distress. In a crisis situation, stress can lead to a breakdown that prevents someone from functioning normally. Something is considered a crisis by the way an individual responds to the event. This means something that triggers a crisis situation for one individual may have zero or minimal impact on another.
What is crisis intervention?
Crisis intervention is treatment and care used to help patients who are suffering from trauma that has caused an acute mental or physical breakdown. It is meant to provide quick, short-term, and immediate assistance, and is designed to help an individual recover from extreme distress and regain normal functioning.
What is group counseling?
Group counseling is when one or more counselors lead a group discussion, usually between five and 15 people. The group may focus on a shared experience or situation, and provide support and encouragement to the other attendees.
What type of education is required for becoming a counselor?
Each state defines its own requirements for what licenses and education are needed to be a counselor. It's common for counselors to have a bachelor's degree in psychology or a similar field, as well as a master's degree. After that, counselors should obtain their state license, and can move on to achieving other licenses like the:
- National Certified Counselor (NCC) license
- Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CCMHC) license
- Master Addictions Counselor (MAC) license
- Forensic Health Evaluators (FHE) license
- Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF) license
- Certified Family Therapist (CFT) license
How long does it take for counseling to show results?
This all depends on the patient's goals and circumstances. Some people are happy with their results after just a few sessions; others continue to meet with their counselors for years. There is no right or wrong length of time to go to counseling.
What types of individuals are not a good candidate for counseling services?
Anyone can benefit from counseling services. Counseling can help you gain greater insight into yourself; deal with feelings of sadness, worry, depression or anxiety; as well as work out relationship problems, trauma or addiction. Not every type of counseling service works with every person.
Are discussions with a counselor confidential?
Yes. Except in very specific situations, a counselor will never repeat conversations from a counseling session. Situations where information from sessions might be shared include:
- If the counselor believes the patient might harm him or herself, or someone else.
- If the counselor wants to get a second opinion on the patient's treatment. If this is the case, the counselor should seek the patient's written permission before consulting another professional.