Dr. Hardebeck's answers to
Frequently Asked Questions:

What is a visit to a psychologist like?
    Usually, a first appointment is what we call an "intake appointment." At
    this time we would discuss your reasons for coming to me, and we would
    collaborate on a plan to meet your needs or the needs of your child. For
    clients who are seeking a specific psychological assessment, the intake
    can sometimes be completed on the same day as the assessment.

    Psychological assessments vary greatly. For children, psychological
    assessments often seem like playing a game, drawing pictures, or solving
    a puzzle. For adolescents and adults, there are often many questions to
    answer, and sometimes problem solving activities. Most assessments are
    designed to seem relatively simplistic on the surface. You will get the
    most benefit from a psychological assessment if you simply relax and be
    as open and honest as possible. Children should not be "prepped" for an
    assessment; this often produces only anxiety, which is usually
    counterproductive. It is best for parents to simply give some very
    minimal information to the child about the visit, and then adopt a
    relaxed, pleasant attitude.

    Therapy appointments are scheduled regularly, typically once a week or
    once every two weeks. There are many different types of therapy,
    depending on the age of the client and the specific issues involved. For
    young children, "play therapy" is often used to address their needs. Most
    other types of therapy are classified as "talk therapy." Talk therapy can
    include a number of approaches, in which the client verbally works
    through his or her issues with the guidance of the psychologist. Some
    talk therapy approaches are more focused on identifying and changing
    specific thought patterns and behaviors, while other approaches focus
    on processing thoughts and feelings related to personal relationships and
    experiences.

    When the treatment plan is complete, the client is transitioned out of
    therapy.

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