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Psychology

Learn to move beyond feeling unwell

Chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic pain, and other complex conditions are not psychological conditions but, like having heart disease or diabetes, they can have significant impacts on emotional wellbeing. It's very common to have emotional stress in your life if you have an ongoing illness that affects every aspect of your life.

Our psychologists are familiar with fatigue, pain, blood pressure and sleep disorders and can tell the difference between physiological and psychological stress. We want you to understand this, to better manage emotional stress that uses your limited energy and to invest your energy into strategies that will enhance your wellbeing in the long term.

Our psychologists

Lisa Ellis
Psychologist – Active Health Clinic
03 9878 5394
Medicare Provider Number: 4284922W

Paula Sladdin
Psychologist – Active Health Clinic
03 9878 5394
Medicare Provider Number: 4523413L

Cost

Please see our Fees and rebates page.

Concession rates are available for Health Care Card holders. Medicare and private health insurance rebates are also available.

Can I use a Mental Health Care plan to see a psychologist?

Yes, if you are eligible, you can develop a Mental Health Care plan with your GP, for subsidised sessions with a psychologist. Please see our Fees and rebates page for more information.

Do I need to see a psychologist at Active Health Clinic or can I go somewhere else?

You can ask your GP to refer you to any psychologist.

The advantage of staying at Active Health Clinic is that our psychologists specialise in working with clients who have chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and other complex pain and fatigue conditions. Also, if you are seeing one of our exercise physiologists, your treatment will complement the work you do with them. With your consent, your psychologist and exercise physiologist can work together on your rehabilitation plan to help you get the best outcome.

What can I expect when I speak to a psychologist?

During counselling, you have the opportunity to talk about your concerns in a non-judgmental and private environment. A psychologist will help you to explore the parts of your life you would like to change and help you to develop a plan to implement those changes. A psychologist can help you to identify the areas of your life which may be problematic and/or thoughts and behaviours that may be adding to your difficulties.

Our psychologists are registered with the Psychology Board of Australia, which means that confidentially is not only important but required by law. When you speak to a psychologist you can be sure that your information will stay private unless you give consent for information about you to be passed on to other health professionals, or unless the psychologist has concerns about your or another's safety.

What can I expect from my first appointment?

Each appointment lasts approximately 55 minutes.

The first time you meet with a psychologist, you can expect to answer a lot of questions. You will be asked about what areas you need help with and what you want to change. You will be asked to complete some paperwork and you may be asked to do some homework tasks before the next appointment.

How often and how long will I have to attend counselling?

Both of these decisions are up to you, and you can talk with the psychologist about these things during your first session.

How often you have appointments depends on what you're seeing the psychologist for, and how much time you have available. Usually, weekly or fortnightly appointments are best in the early stages. You may reduce this as you make progress.

The number of sessions again depends on the nature of the issues and the goals you have. Some people can achieve their goals in 4-6 sessions, while others may need ongoing support. You and your psychologist will regularly review your goals to make sure you're making progress. If you want to speed things up, you might want to do homework tasks and practise the new skills or techniques you are learning, in between sessions.

How can I benefit from seeing a psychologist?

Living with a chronic illness can be extremely stressful. It can impact all areas of your life, including your career, education, finances, relationships, family life and friendships, and can also lead to symptoms of anxiety and depression. Talking to a psychologist can help you deal with the stress of being unwell and help you reduce the impact of it on your life. Also, as your symptoms improve and you begin to get back into life, it can be stressful to return to school or work and you may need some support to develop and reach your goals.

I want my son/daughter to see a psychologist. Will I be included in the appointments?

We can talk about this with you during your first appointment. It's usually best for adolescents to have the opportunity to talk openly to the psychologist without their parents in the room. However, you will be given updates on your child’s progress and will be included in discussions about what you can do to help. You will usually be asked to be present in the first appointment until your child feels comfortable to speak with the psychologist alone.

Ready to make an appointment with one of our psychologists?