PTSD: National Center for PTSD

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Finding a Therapist


Finding a Therapist

Good treatments for PTSD are available. Here are some suggestions for finding a therapist who can help your recovery.

Things to consider

  • Make sure the therapist has experience treating trauma survivors.
  • Try to find a therapist who specializes in effective treatment of PTSD: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT); Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT); Prolonged Exposure therapy (PE); or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).
  • Find out what types of insurance the therapist accepts and what you will have to pay (out-of-pocket costs) for care.
  • You may find more than one therapist. We also have information about Types of Therapists and Choosing a Therapist, (en Español).

First steps

  • Contact your family doctor to ask for a recommendation. You can also ask friends and family if they can recommend someone.
  • If you have health insurance, call to find out which mental health providers your insurance company will pay for. Your insurance company may require that you choose a provider from among a list of therapists they maintain.

Finding a therapist using the internet

These resources can help you locate a therapist who is right for you. Note: These resources can be used by anyone, but if you are a Veteran, also check out the "Help for Veterans" section below.

Finding a therapist by phone

You can also find a therapist by making a few phone calls to the numbers above or:

  • Some mental health services are listed in the phone book. In the Government pages, look in the "County Government Offices" section, and find "Health Services (Dept. of)" or "Department of Health Services." "Mental Health" will be listed.
  • In the yellow pages, therapists are listed under "counseling," "psychologists," "social workers," "psychotherapists," "social and human services," or "mental health."
  • You can also call the psychology department of a local college or university.

Help for Veterans

  • All VA Medical Centers and many VA clinics provide PTSD care.
  • Some VA centers have specialty programs for PTSD. Use the VA PTSD Program Locator to find a VA PTSD program.
  • Vet Centers provide readjustment counseling to Veterans and their families after war. Find a Vet Center near you.
  • VA Medical Centers and Vet Centers are also listed in the phone book. In the Government pages, look under "United States Government Offices." Then look for "Veterans Affairs, Dept of." In that section, look under "Medical Care" and "Vet Centers - Counseling and Guidance."

Date this content was last updated is at the bottom of the page.

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Where to Get Help for PTSD

The National Center for PTSD does not provide direct clinical care, individual referrals or benefits information.