Mental Health Counseling

Topics: Mental health, Clinical psychology, Psychiatry Pages: 17 (6134 words) Published: June 18, 2011

Mental Health and Community Counseling
COUN 501

Counseling is within the reach of anyone in today’s society. The fields of mental health and community counseling allow services to be rendered to anyone that may need these services while in the past these service were only accessible for a person of a higher social standing in essence the rich. Mental health and community counseling had its beginnings several centuries ago. The services received from mental health and community counseling have helped those with personality development and emotional problems that are unable to pay for services in private practice and therefore if not for these services these clients would fall through the cracks. Mental health and community counseling use a blended technique spectrum in order to reach solutions with their clients. While there is mounting evidence of the impact of spirituality on mental well-being many counselors still do not incorporate spirituality as part of their therapy.

Mental Health and Community Counseling
Mental health and community counseling has been an important part of the field of psychology since these branches have emerged. Both of these sectors of counseling provided services to people who would otherwise not be able to obtain these services. Both of mental health counseling and community counseling have a rich history that can be traced back to psychology. The following will provide a look at how these branches emerged from humble beginnings in psychology and the avenues of techniques used within both forms of this type of counseling. Psychology did not emerge as a separate discipline until the late 1800’s; this discipline can be traced back to its earliest history of the early Greeks (Kendra). During the 17th century Rene Descartes, a French Philosopher, introduced the idea of dualism, which asserted that the mind and the body were two separate entities that interact to form the human experience and psychology was born (Kendra). Mental health counseling and community counseling are fields with in the discipline of psychology (Kendra).

Mental health counseling and community counseling deal with a wealth of issues. Community counselors work to assist individual, families, and groups with diverse needs through challenges in their lives. Counselors take a developmental perspective that people grow and change throughout their lives. Professional counselors understand principles of human development, psychology, mental health, and change theories, and develop an effective helping relationship with people from diverse cultures. Counselors are skilled in the assessment of people and situations, diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders, and in the application of cognitive, behavioral and systemic strategies to facilitate change. Community counselors help clients explore their concerns and assist them in creating change. Counselors work with client to implement personal goals and advocate of system wide changes.

Counselors in the mental health field and community counseling use a wide array of techniques to help their patients. This paper will discuss a use of the unstructured clinical interview, existential theory, solution focused strategies, and empathy. Fernando (2007) concluded existential theory is a theory based on obvious parts of human existence: freedom, isolation, meaninglessness, and death. Existential therapy deals with the anxiety the people feel while dealing with the facts of their life that are rooted in existence (Fernando, 2007). The use of existential therapy with client does not stop the suffering that the client feels but instead the counselor helps the client to deal with the suffering in a positive manner (Fernando, 2007). The counselor points out the faulty thinking and behavior patterns that may have cause the suffering in the client’s life (Fernando, 2007). In the practice of existential approach there is...
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