In Kuwait, there are no specific requirements or guidelines that determine who can be a psychologist. In many other countries, however, psychologists must have a doctoral degree in the field of psychology, a Psy.D. (Doctor of Psychology), or an Ed.D. (Doctor of Education) to work as licensed psychologists.
In addition to a doctorate, a psychologist must also complete a specific number of hours of supervised training. This will generally involve two to three years working in clinics or hospitals before finishing the Ph.D., and at least one year of intense, full-time training after the degree is completed. In many countries, psychologists also have to pass licensing examinations. However, this is not the case in Kuwait.
Overall, it takes about five to eight years after graduation to complete the master’s and Ph.D. in psychology and become a licensed psychologist.
Are all therapists psychologists?
No. In addition to psychologists, there are other types of licensed professionals who can also provide therapy and counseling services, including licensed social workers, licensed marital and family counselors, and licensed professional counselors.
As Kuwait does not have laws or regulations that define who can provide mental health services, patients are strongly recommended to make sure that their clinicians have attended accredited graduate schools and are licensed within their home countries. At FSHN, therapists are always ready to discuss their education, training, and credentials whenever required.
Psychotherapy gives you the space to think about yourself and your life. By thinking and talking with a trained psychotherapist, you can find it easier to understand how past experiences, current patterns of thought and behavior, and worries about the future are causing difficulties in your present life.
Through your relationship with your therapist and the shared exploration of your life, you will find relief from recurring problems, live life more fully, and realize your full potential.
What happens in psychotherapy?
As psychotherapy is based on each individual’s needs and requirements, each individual’s process will be different. Most people, however, generally attend a 50-minute therapy session at least once a week.
Depending on the intensity of their condition, some patients may only need brief therapy sessions (about six sessions), while others may need more intensive psychotherapy requiring them to see their therapists more often.
It is normal to feel nervous before the first therapy session. However, this feeling fades away quicky as the therapist works with the patient to develop the treatment goals and plan. The treatment plan is regularly revised and updated based on the patient’s needs.
In many cases, psychotherapy does not involve any medication. In other cases, however, medications can be useful to support therapy goals. At FSHN, we can determine when medication is required and accordingly refer patients to the appropriate specialist.
Who should seek professional counselling or therapy?
Most of us have experienced anxiety, distress or feelings of emptiness at some point in our lives due to different reasons, such as bereavement, loss, relationship tensions, or illness. This discomfort can have a profound effect on our work, health and on those closest to us. That’s why we seek help when we reach a point where we can no longer resolve conflict, come to terms with pain or disappointment, or see little hope of change.
FSHN believes that mental health is just as important as oral or physical health. It, too, requires periodic check-ups and maintenance plans to achieve optimum overall health.
What types of problems can therapy help with?
People seek counseling and therapy services for many different issues and concerns - from management of major life changes to treatment of mental health conditions, including:
• Diagnosis and treatment of specific concerns, such as depression, OCD, social anxiety, childhood anxiety and depression, personality disorders, and many others
• Attention and concentration problems (e.g. ADHD)
• Couples counseling
• Family and relationship problems
• Stress and anger management
• Problems with weight and eating concerns
• Sleep problems
• Grief and loss management
• Post-natal depression or the “baby blues”
• Academic or work problems
• Self-understanding and identity concerns
• Learning disabilities, including reading, writing, and math disabilities
• Developmental disabilities
• Post-traumatic stress disorder
• Dementia and geriatric concerns
• Physical health problems
Does therapy actually work?
Yes, therapy really does help a lot of people. Research shows that about 80% of people who sought mental health services reported improvement. Countless studies have also associated psychotherapeutic treatment with improvement in social functioning, relief from anxiety, reduction in depression, along with many other benefits.
Similarly, in an extensive study conducted by Consumer Reports magazine, which relied largely on self-reports from patients, 9 out of 10 Americans reported positive results from therapy, concluding that treatment by qualified therapists - such as licensed psychologists - was more likely to produce benefits.
What about confidentiality and privacy?
Confidentiality is an important aspect of mental health services, which FSHN takes very seriously. At FSHN, our team maintains strict privacy and confidentiality policies. All interactions - beginning from the first phone call or visit - are treated as completely confidential and private.
FSHN is the only non-profit mental health care provider in Kuwait and it adheres to the ethical codes of both the American Psychological Association (APA) and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW).
While we do not believe in the negative social stigma associated with mental health therapy, we recognize the associated cultural sensitives. Your visit will be completely confidential. Our therapists will never disclose or discuss your case with anyone without your consent.
What is psychoeducational testing?
Psychoeducational testing (also referred to as “psychological testing”, “psychological assessment”, “psychological evaluation”, “LD testing”, “psychological battery”, and “IQ/achievement testing”), is an in-depth assessment of a student's cognitive and academic strengths and weaknesses. It shows how a student learns, identifies areas that might need support, and provide diagnosis of any possible learning disabilities or other conditions that may require special educational interventions. This type of assessments are also helpful in identifying gifted and talented students.
Through our psychoeducational assessments, we can work with the child’s school or university to make sure the treatment and educational plan is implemented properly and effectively. Our intervention-oriented assessments offer concrete and well-informed recommendations to improve the underlying condition and build on the child’s existing strengths.
How do I know if my child needs psychoeducational testing?
If your child seems to be underachieving in school, chronically struggling in a certain academic area, showing very inconsistent progress across academic areas, or if you or teachers suspect that your child has a unique style of learning which presents challenges, then psychoeducational testing may be helpful.
Psychoeducational evaluations usually start with an interview with the parents to get a detailed description of the concerns. School records, consultation with teachers, and classroom observations can also help in determining what tests, if any, can be used to address the underlying concerns.
What do I need to do prior to the testing appointment?
The therapist will meet with you to talk about your child’s background, including: birth and development details, family history, as well as medical and educational history. You will also be required to sign releases to obtain copies of past test results, medical reports and school records. A copy of the current report card and samples of your child’s academic work can also be helpful to your therapist.
How should I prepare my child for the testing appointment?
For young children, tell them that they will meet with a psychologist/educational psychologist who will engage with them in a fun and friendly manner, by taking part in activities, such as drawing, playing games and puzzles. Bringing the child’s favorite toy or a photograph of family, friend or family pet during the visit can also ease the tension and facilitate a productive session.
For older children, particularly those who enjoy computers, tell them that they may be asked to engage in various fun computer-related activities and other small tasks.
In all cases, assure your child that most children enjoy the testing experience and often look forward to returning.
How are psychoeducational evaluation results used?
The psychoeducational evaluation provides major information about the child’s general intelligence, level of academic achievement, fine and visual motor integration, as well as language, memory and everyday life skills. Results are then compared to other children’s results to determine if treatment is required and in what form, to help improve the child’s academic skills.
How much does therapy or counseling cost?
Our services are based on particularly-tailored treatment plans, and fees are estimated according to the requirements of each plan. So, we can only provide a more accurate estimation of cost after assessing the child’s needs and identifying the related treatment program.
However, as a non-profit organization, FSHN is committed to providing the highest quality services to all those who need them, regardless of their financial situation.
How do I make an appointment?
If you need to schedule an appointment, please call (+965) 22257238, or fill out the Online Appointment Form.
What if I have more questions?
If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact Dr. Nicholas Scull on (965) 2572-0338, or at [email protected]