Finding the right counselling in Kitchener during uncertain times

In the current global pandemic in particular, we have seen a significant rise in depressive disorders in North America According to the NHIS, prior to the pandemic from January to June 2019, 1 in 10 adults reported symptoms of anxiety or depressive disorder. It is quite alarming when compared to reports during the pandemic, where there has been an increase to 4 in 10 adults who are struggling with these same symptoms (See figure 1 below).

To further investigate the impact of the pandemic on our mental health, KFF, a leader in health policy analysis and health journalism, conducted a Health Tracking Poll from July 2020. The poll revealed that many adults are reporting negative impacts on their mental health and well-being due to worry and stress over the coronavirus:

The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly altered what we have come to accept as normal. Since the onset of social distancing, the addition of masks to our daily dress code, and the fear of getting severely ill or passing on a potentially deadly illness to others, our lives have changed drastically. As a result, many of us are experiencing strong emotions we often feel ill-equipped to manage.

  • difficulty sleeping (36%)
  • difficulty eating (32%)
  • increases in alcohol consumption or substance use (12%)
  • worsening chronic conditions (12%)

To put all of this into perspective, if you are experiencing depressive feelings, feeling overwhelmed, struggling with anxiousness or even struggling to maintain positive relationships – the evidence above points to the fact that you are not alone.

Social distancing can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms such as substance abuse, smoking, and gambling, as well as not prioritizing our health as much as we should. But the good news is that there is plenty of support available to help you during these difficult times.

Psychotherapy: what is it and why should you consider it

Psychotherapy, otherwise known as talk therapy, is the treatment of emotional, physical, and spiritual wellbeing using psychological treatment rather than medical treatment. Our mental health can be affected by a number of things such as change, grief, trauma, financial pressures, isolation, relationship issues, and emotional dysregulation to name a few. Therapy aims to help us understand the emotions that arise from these triggers and explore the subsequent problematic behaviours that typically develop.

And studies have proven that it really works!

Researchers have used brain imaging techniques to track the changes in an individual’s brain after psychotherapy treatment. In most studies, the effects from psychotherapy and medication were very similar.

The biggest hurdle that seems to be preventing most people from seeking psychological help, is the fear of being judged or the incorrect assumption that getting help means that they have failed. But times are changing. Now, more than ever, the stigma around counselling and psychotherapy is shifting. It seems more people are starting to realize that learning to cope with stress in a healthy way will make you, the people you care about, and those around you become more resilient. Furthermore, taking the necessary action to care for yourself can better equip you to help others.

So why not ask a highly trained professional – someone who has studied brain-behaviour relationships, who has expertise in mental health assessment, diagnosis and treatment, and whose counsel is brimming with helpful tools to bring about healthier thought patterns – to give you a helping hand?

Where to look for counselling services in Kitchener

Finding the right counselling services and therapist to suit you and your requirements can be a challenge.

COCA Psychotherapy counselling services in Kitchener, Waterloo have a team of dynamic psychotherapists whose focus is to empower individuals to reach their desired level of self-fulfillment. They go about this process through a collaborative and non-judgmental approach.

The COCA team is made up of four certified and highly experienced therapists based in Kitchener who specialize in Couples Counselling, Depression Counselling, Family Counselling, and both Group and Individual Counselling.

Furthermore, if you are practicing strict social distancing, and are actively avoiding face-to-face appointments, there is also the option of Online Counselling throughout Ontario, Newfoundland & Labrador, and Nova Scotia.

While COCA Psychotherapy will certainly provide you with tools and a safe space to communicate freely, getting the most out of therapy requires a collaborative effort between both you and your therapist. It may be difficult at first, but try your best to be open and honest, and commit to the treatment plan.

Reaching out for support is one of the hardest steps – so we are so happy that you are reading this! Feel free to contact us here to book an appointment or give us a call on 226-336-5787 for a free consultation over the phone.

You can do this! The end result is a healthier you.


  1. American Psychological Association. Understanding psychotherapy and how it works. 2016.
  2. Karlsson, H. How Psychotherapy changes the Brain. Psychiatric Times. 2011.
  3. Wiswede D, et al. 2014. Tracking Functional Brain Changes in Patients with Depression under Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Using Individualized Stimuli. PLoS ONE. 2014.
  4. Panchal, N, Kamal, R, Cox, C, & Garfield, R. 2021. The Implications of COVID-19 for Mental Health and Substance Use.

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