What's the difference between a Psychologist and other types of therapists?
Therapists can have all sorts of different degrees and clinical training. As a Clinical Psychologist, I have a doctoral level degree (PhD) and am trained in empirically supported therapies which are often focused on individual and internal sources of significant distress and healing. In general, Clinical Psychologists are specialized in diagnosing and treating serious mental illness and injury, and in helping people to recover "back to normal."
A few other common types of therapists include Counselors (e.g., LPC), Social Workers (e.g., LCSW), and Marriage and Family Therapists (e.g., LMFT). These professionals usually have masters level degrees, and can be specialized in helping people with other areas of functioning not necessarily limited to recovering from significant psychological distress. A Counselor may be more experienced in helping people to learn better ways to cope with more general stress, and to push their limits and achieve "better than normal" goals. A Social Worker may focus more on the systemic forces that surround individuals and that contribute to either prosperity or distress. Social Workers are trained to help connect people to resources like food, housing, employment, or education assistance, in addition to encouraging individual and internal motivation and skills for maintaining well being. Marriage and Family Therapists have specialized training to work with couples and families, and often focus on the health of the "relationship" in addition to the individual clients. Knowing these differences, you should try to seek care from a therapist who's training and experience matches your needs.
Do you prescribe medication?
No. If you are interested in receiving medication, please consult with your primary care doctor to find a prescriber.
How much do you cost?
That all depends on your insurance. I see and bill all of my clients through a network service called SonderMind, and accept most insurances (United, Aetna, Cigna, Optum, Kaiser Permanente, Anthem BCBS, Bright Health, Apostrophe, and Medicare). Ask your insurer about telebehavioral health coverage to learn about what co-pays, deductibles, or limits you can expect. Please call me to discuss other options if you do not have insurance coverage.
What can I expect in therapy?
Typically, I meet with clients for 60 minutes, once per week, for a few months. The first session is a longer interview for me to learn more about you and your needs, and then each session after that we will work on specific goals that we set together. My theoretical orientation is largely behavioral, which means that I will ask you to do things between sessions (e.g., write things down, try out experiments) and then we'll talk about your thoughts and experiences when we next meet. You can expect me to be empathic and understanding, and also stern and committed to helping you reach your goals.
Because I practice only teletherapy, all of our sessions will be conducted through a secure video portal on your computer, tablet, or smartphone. I do not conduct sessions with audio only (over telephone), so you need to have some web-video capability. However, I do require a phone back-up where I can reach you if we lose video contact during session. Unique to teletherapy, I will also confirm at every session that you are in a private and confidential space, ask where you are physically located in case of an emergency, and ask if you have a personal emergency contact who you would prefer I call in an emergency. Other than that, the therapy experience is largely the same as in person.
If I tell you that I'm suicidal, will you hospitalize me?
In most cases, no.
My whole career has been centered on talking about suicide. I want to help you, and for that to happen, we have to be open and honest with each other. So talking about suicide is really often part of the package. However, I do ask that while we work together, you be willing to work with me to collaboratively find a mutually agreeable way for you to maintain your safety at home. For example, this may mean having a crisis safety plan in place that you are confident you can follow, or having someone who you will call or text if needed (like the crisis line at the bottom of this page). On the other hand, if you tell me that you're going to kill yourself and you're seriously intoxicated or otherwise unable or unsure of your ability to maintain your immediate safety, then we'll start talking about if going to the hospital makes sense.
Are there any issues or types of clients that you DON’T work with?
I only work with individual adults aged 18+ (I do not work with children, adolescents or couples). I do not conduct child custody evaluations nor do I provide custody recommendations. I do not provide court-mandated treatment. I do not provide testing or assessments for ADHD, Autism, or Learning Disability diagnoses. Last, I can only provide therapy and counseling to individuals residing in the state of Colorado.
If I want to work with you, what should I do next?
First, I would like to chat with you for 10-15 minutes to make sure that I can help with what you're looking for, or if another referral may be better. Please give me a call at 720-213-8613 or send an e-mail to Matthew.Podlogar@COpsych.org to ask more questions or schedule a time to talk. Please note that e-mail is inherently NOT confidential, so please do not include private health information in your e-mail. If after talking we both agree that moving forward makes sense, the next step is for me to get you set up with SonderMind so that we can begin. I am excited to meet you!