Therapy, Society and Youth

The benefits of therapy in individuals lives and how society treats therapy and counseling


Eva Koureta, Staff Writer

Ancient Greeks believed without a healthy mind you cannot have a healthy body. Living in the modern world where people have many responsibilities and tasks to complete in their everyday life has an impact on mental health. Healing people’s mental health issues and having a healthier life is what therapy and counseling sessions fight for.

If we could go back in time, specifically a few decades ago, we would see society did not believe in or treat mental health issues the same as nowadays. In the early 2000s, people tended to believe that if a person seeks a therapist, then the individual is crazy or has serious problems. Another feature of the past was that society did not accept therapy as an important aspect of people’s lives. People who needed treatment would not visit a therapist or if they did, they would not share it with their society. 

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) therapy looks different in modern society than in the previous years. Adults who received mental health treatment or counseling from 2002 to 2020 have increased. In 2002, almost 27.2 million American adults received mental health treatment compared to 2020 when 41.4 million such individuals were treated with therapy or counseling. 

According to Dr. Dennis Emano, a mental health counselor at COD, to understand the importance of therapy, first we need to know what therapy is. A singular definition of therapy would be that therapy treats mental health issues and disorders without medication.

“There are numerous types of therapy. Each therapy covers the needs of every individual in different aspects. From a young age, people must know and learn the concept of therapy and mental health. Meeting with a counselor or therapist, individuals can follow the correct path of what kind of therapy they might need,” said Emano. 

Furthermore, according to Dr. Emano, one characteristic that therapy and counseling have in common, perhaps the most important aspect, is that they both try to solve problems.

For instance, counseling tends to focus on a specific issue for a specific amount of time. However, therapy can be more long-term and focuses on the individual rather than the issue itself. 

When it comes to the youth, the future of this world, young adults must be aware of therapy and its benefits. Young people are in a greater need of therapy or counseling than ever; dealing with stressors like homework and work. But how can young individuals know when to see a therapist?

“Social media and the stress that is causing to the young generation can be harmful not only to the youth but to adults, too. Everyone, regardless of age, should simply ask themselves, ‘Am I happy?’ If the answer is ‘no,’ or there is no answer at all, then the individual should not be afraid to ask for help. Even if the answer is ‘yes,’ talking about experiences and why they feel happy can help the individuals feel even better,” said Emano. 

There is no doubt mental health is as important as physical health. What society must understand is that it is all right to feel different. It is all right to seek help, and it is all right and normal to attend therapy or counseling sessions. 

“Therapy is not only for people who have mental issues,” said Emano. “If you are a human being, then you need therapy. Therapy helps people not only to solve their problems but also helps them understand themselves deeply and more thoughtfully.”

Emano said accepting one another helps us accept ourselves. Therapy and counseling can only work if we, as individuals, allow therapy and counseling sessions in our lives.