How Long Does Psychotherapy Take to Help?

Feb 01, 2023
How Long Does Psychotherapy Take to Help?
Psychotherapy is effective in helping people of all ages manage a variety of emotional health issues, but it can take some time to see results. If therapy is in your future, you may be wondering how many sessions you’ll need.

Roughly 20% of Americans seek mental health care in a given year, and of those, about half choose therapy. And that’s for good reason — statistics show psychotherapy is very effective in helping people manage their mental health issues.

With offices in Glendale and Phoenix, Arizona, The Marcann Group offers in-person and virtual psychotherapy sessions to help people of all ages address a wide array of emotional and mental health concerns. 

One question our team frequently hears is, how long will therapy take? In this post, our team provides some insight.

The basics of psychotherapy

Also called talk therapy, psychotherapy focuses on using conversation to delve into underlying causes of anxiety, depression, and other mood- and emotional health-related issues. One goal of psychotherapy is to help people understand the causes, then develop the tools they need to deal with them effectively and successfully.

Therapy may involve the provider and the patient, or it may be in a group or family setting. In addition to treating emotional health issues, like depression or anxiety, psychotherapy is also helpful in addressing issues involving trauma, loss, illness, death, and similar issues, including coping and handling the daily stresses of life.

Most therapy sessions take about an hour, and most people have sessions once a week during treatment. Psychotherapy is often used in combination with medication, but it can be used on its own, as well.

Recommended number of sessions

Psychotherapy is a completely individualized treatment, which means no two people will have the same therapy experience. It also means there’s no way to say with certainty how many sessions you’ll need to achieve your goal.

Generally, most people experience benefits after about 3-4 months of psychotherapy or about 15-20 sessions, but many people experience initial benefits and improvements earlier. 

Contributing factors

Even once you experience those initial benefits, that doesn't mean your treatment is complete. At the beginning of therapy, you and your therapist will discuss your end goals. Remember, how actively you participate in your treatment will help determine the number of sessions you need.

In addition to your personal therapeutic goals, the issue being treated also plays a role in the number of recommended sessions. For instance, someone with severe depression may require a longer course of therapy than a person with a less severe issue.

Bottom line

Ultimately, the goal of psychotherapy is to help you feel better and give you the tools you need to cope with stress and take control of your life and your future. While it’s natural to wonder about the length of therapy, it’s essential to remember that your therapy will progress at a pace that’s right for you, enabling you to achieve your goals and enjoy the true benefits therapy can offer.

Our team is invested in your success, and we’re dedicated to working with you at every step of the therapeutic process to ensure you reach your goals. If you’d like to learn more about psychotherapy and how it can help you, book an appointment online or over the phone with the team at The Marcann Group today.