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What is the difference between therapy and counseling?

I always hear and see others referring to marriage counselors or marriage therapists as if they are the same things. No one has ever explained whether the two are the same or two separate occupations. I'd like to be informed so that I know which one I want to pursue more. #psychology #counselor #therapists


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Gary’s Answer

Hi,
Interesting question. It seems like the terms Therapy and Counseling are used together and even mixed up a lot when referring to any type of psychological area.
I think counseling can be applied to any situation where one person is helping or counseling another...I used to counsel people on jobs, careers, etc. when I was an Army Recruiter, a Career Counselor and any jobs where I managed people for example. Therapy is a term used to when someone needs something corrected ...example, Occupational/Physical Therapy...Therapy and Counseling typically go together when someone needs help with a psychological or emotional issue like depression, anxiety, etc.


Thank you, I do think that the terms are used almost interchangeably and professors don't differentiate the two for students enough. Angela A.

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Nancy’s Answer

Angela, people sometimes shorten the word psychotherapy to therapy. It is a psychological intervention and treatment modality that involves psychological techniques employed by a trained professional to alter behavior, mood, thinking patterns or psychosocial adjustment. Counseling is a more general helping term. Some counselors perform psychotherapy and some do not. Psychotherapy is usually supervised by a doctoral-level psychologist or psychiatrist if performed by a social worker or counselor with a master’s degree. Insurance companies also dictate who they will pay for to perform it.

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