Talking Therapies - Deciding on therapy
How do I choose a talking therapy?
The therapy you choose will depend on a few things. You need to think about what you want to get out of your talking therapy and also what is most helpful for your mental illness. How much private or NHS therapy will help you depends on the therapeutic relationship you and your therapist develop.
How do I choose a private therapist?
If you are considering seeing a therapist privately:
- your mental health team should not automatically discharge you if you are getting private therapy. However, you are unlikely to then get talking therapy on the NHS.
- make sure that the therapist belongs to a registered body and is qualified (see the section below).
Are therapists regulated and accredited?
There is no standard regulation system for therapists. Someone can advertise themselves and work as a therapist without being checked.
If you are thinking about using a private therapist, it is important to look into their qualifications. Therapists can get a certificate or accreditation, which shows that they meet certain standards.
Therapists choose to be checked, or regulated, and ‘accreditation bodies’ do this checking. It is important to check that your therapist is registered with an accreditation body. All accredited therapists must show that they meet certain standards such as:
- having appropriate training and qualifications
- working to a code of ethics
- having a complaints procedure.
In the UK, the main accreditation bodies are:
- Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC)
- British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
- UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)
- British Psychological Society (BPS)
- UK Register of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (UKRCP).
These organisations provide lists of accredited therapists and you can find details of their websites in further information.
Need practical advice & info? We can help.
Contact our Advice team about mental health & related issues
0300 5000 927 Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4pm, not including bank holidays