Oftentimes, psychologists and psychiatrists are thought of as the ultimate gurus in mental health and relationship counselling worlds; but they’re not the only ones with the skills and resources to help create meaningful change in their client’s lives or relationships.
Social workers are often overlooked for psychologists and psychiatrists when it comes to counselling. They’re looked at as community fixers and builders who are hired through an agency to intervene in negative situations in marginalized communities. But that’s just one strand of social work – we do so much more!
What Social Workers Really Do…
- Social workers help to better the lives of individuals by utilizing available resources. These help develop skills to resolve issues and lead a better life.
- Social workers don’t just help work through depression or anxiety, we motivate and point people in the right direction towards a happier, healthier and well rounded life.
- Social workers have a four-year post-secondary bachelor’s, a masters (required for many positions), or doctoral degree, and spend several years learning the intricacies and discipline required for such positions.
- Many social workers do talk therapy in a counselling setting, like other counselling practitioners. Many social workers are trained in couples therapy, trauma, addictions and mental health issues. They can be equally as effective as any other therapist and usually more cost-effective.
- Social workers are collaborative! We don’t rely on just our counselling sessions to create positive change, but collect information and resources from all sectors to plan and fulfil a recovery strategy through action and societal resources.
Sometimes it’s hard to decide what type of practitioner is best for your needs. Other times, long waiting lists can mean immediate help is not available. This frustration can serve as a barrier to adequate treatment – and when mental health and intimate relationships are on the line, waiting for an available practitioner can make a situation worse.
Healthy relationships are so important that it actually has physical benefits:
- Harvard Medical School found that good relationships calm people down from the fight-or-flight response that kicks in when they’re feeling angry or scared
- Healthy relationships help a bad day from getting worse. Your body decompresses if you have a partner willing to listen.
- Physical intimacy such as holding hands or hugging can lower levels of stress hormones.
- Your partner might encourage healthy habits such as exercise or eating better.
- People in happy marriages tend to have lower blood pressure than those who aren’t married or have strained marriages
In short, it’s important to remember the importance of healthy relationships and positive mental health. At Vaughan Relationship Centre, we are committed to helping our clients build stronger relationships with real solutions. We create a nurturing and supportive environment; provide discernment counselling to help couples make the right decisions about staying together; provide high quality care with strong clinical training and provide valuable service to the community by providing lower cost options and connecting them with community resources.