What Does a Crisis Counselor Do?

| Staff Writers

Are you interested in learning what a crisis counselor does? If you would like to enter a college degree program focused on the discipline of counseling, one thing that you must do early on in your college career is decide which title you are working towards. There are a variety of different types of specialists and professionals who work in the field of counseling, and many work with a very specific set of clientele in a unique setting. For those who would like to work with patients who are responding to a traumatic life experience, crisis counseling could be the right specialty. Read on, and learn about the elements of crisis counseling.

Where Did Crisis Counseling Get Its Roots?

The discipline of counseling has advanced leaps and bounds over the last several decades. While the discipline was very broad in the beginning, as mental health experts have performed research and studies, more and more specialties have been created in response to the needs of society. The roots of crisis counseling can date all the way back to WWI and WWII, where soldiers and their family members often dealt with psychological issues after going to war. During this time, many people would label a soldier suffering with flashbacks and other issues as weak. It was not too much after the war ended that mental health professionals recognized the need for an approach to treat soldiers with psychological issues that were caused due to their experiences in war.

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What Separates Crisis Counseling From Other Specialties?

Now that you understand how crisis counseling originated, it is important to learn how this specialty differs from others before you start studying theories and curriculum. Crisis counseling is not psychotherapy. but rather a type of crisis intervention that is led by a licensed counselor. Counselors will deal with the patients with crisis situations and how to cope. These situations can range between a developmental issues all the way to the death of someone very close to the patient.

Typically, counselors will provide the patient with support for a brief period of time, where they will provide emotional support and will teach the patient coping strategies while emphasizing techniques that minimize constant stress. If you start to study to become a crisis counselor, you will learn treatment models that are commonly followed in the field. In most cases, you will start by listening to your patient’s situation so that you can assess the situation and ask all of the important questions. Once you complete the assessment, you will education the patient to help them take the proper steps to cope with the crisis. During this time, you will also offer support so that the patient knows that they have an active listener who is on their side. You will be a source of positive reinforcement, and a valuable source of information for patients who regularly depend on relationships to get through a crisis.

You will need to be a very analytical and supportive individual to become a crisis counselor. If you would like to work with a wide range of patients who have all been through something difficult in their lives, the first step is earning an accredited counseling degree. After you get through the academics and you gain your practical experience, test to earn your license. Be a crisis counselor, and teach others how to cope with a crisis effectively.

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