psychotherapy and counselling

Difference Between Psychotherapy And Counselling?

Many of us have heard the term psychotherapy counselling. For psychotherapy and counselling, both of these terms are used interchangeably and seem to have the same context. But there are some key differences between psychotherapy and counselling. Both focus on the personal growth of the patient. Here, we will be looking at each in detail to know the difference between them.


Psychotherapy is a long process in which a person is supposed to explore past issues that seems to be problematic for the present. For some people, the issues can be resolved within the course of a few months while some issues could take years. It can also depend on the level of trauma in a person.

People can do psychotherapy intermittently in a few years’ time, but ultimately, it takes longer than counseling. Psychotherapy is only provided by professional psychotherapists including a psychiatrist, psychologist or a trained social worker.

Mental health related issues can be handled with psychotherapists because they tend to have more knowledge of human behavior than counsellors. Only psychiatrists are capable to dig deep into childhood traumas and other instincts of people to make them stable. These professionals can help people with emotional problems. Talking about past issues and circumstances can bring insight to your problems and eventually you will feel better with the help of a psychotherapist.

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that psychotherapy addresses the root cause and core issues of current emotional and behavioral problems. And after doing that, you find closure and it helps people to move on in their lives. Psychotherapy focuses on the bigger picture of one’s problem rather than immediate and temporary solutions.

There are different types of therapy such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, psychoanalytic psychotherapy, and many other that falls in psychotherapy.


Counselling is a sort of guidance that is offered to people with various issues or situations such as any kind of addiction or grief. The counselor word has the literal meaning of advisor or guidance counselor. Having a guidance counselor means that two people will solve the problem. It is often short and can prolong from few weeks to few months.

Counselling can also be provided by a psychotherapist, but a counselor cannot provide psychotherapy. In counselling, the counselor can give advice on finances and other matters of life to his or her client. In a grand scheme of things, counselling is a short-term solution to your problem but if you suffer from trauma or any personal issue, you will need to consult with a psychotherapist.

For mental health issues, counselling can provide a quick relief on the issues that are not too severe. For instance, if someone is battling an addiction problem, having them talk about what triggers them to drink or how to control the urge of drinking is counseling. Under the circumstances, the counselor will set up guidance for you. He or she will make suggestions and advice on dealing with it.

Counselors are of different types such as marriage counselors, family therapists, grief counselors, life coaches, counselors for substance abuse, and others.

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