Why therapy is for everyone 

Why therapy is for everyone 

If you’re curious about therapy, here are four reasons seeing a mental health counselor may help improve everyone’s well-being and happiness. 

Senior talking to a therapist

Therapy with a licensed health care professional can be a powerful tool for depression, anxiety and grief. But did you know there are many other unexpected ways it may boost your well-being, too? Here’s how therapy may help you live a happier, healthier and more balanced life. 

1. Ease physical pain 

Injury, illness, aging and stress can all cause aches and pains. And that can sometimes bring us down. But it doesn’t have to. A therapist can give you tips to feel less overwhelmed and handle pain better and some of its underlying causes. One type of therapy is called cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT uses strategies to help change how you think about pain so you feel it less.* 

In one study, researchers reviewed the results of 24 studies on using CBT to ease the negative feelings that came with physical pain. They found that CBT is good at easing the symptoms of depression and anxiety that can make us feel down.*

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2. Improve relationships

Therapy can help you find ways to spot and feel more in control of emotions like anger and anxiety. When this happens, you can talk about them more skillfully with family and friends. The outcome: you may be able to connect more fully with the people in your life and feel less alone. 

Therapy may also help you spot unhealthy relationships or behavioral patterns and then change them. It can be a place where you discover your needs and wants. And it can show you how to communicate them. It may also be a way to learn how to be a more supportive friend or partner.*      

Check your coverage 

Log in to your secure member website at AetnaMedicare.com/Login to check your plan benefits and costs. 

3. Manage health issues 

Did you know depression and anxiety are common in people with chronic conditions like diabetes, heart disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)? Poor mental health can also affect how you manage your condition. And it can lead to the disease getting worse.* Talking to a therapist can teach you skills for taking control of your health, such as how to: 

  • Stay on track with treatment
  • Stay away from unhealthy habits like smoking or alcohol
  • Ask for help when you need it 

4. Reach your goals  

Maybe you have a goal to eat healthier, exercise four days a week or spend more time with friends. If you need help reaching a goal, a therapist can give you tips for breaking old habits that are holding you back. 

They can also help you create a plan for going after your goals and share tips for staying motivated. Your therapist can work with you on a goal-setting plan. The secret to success in achieving change is often to take small steps toward your bigger goal. During the process, a therapist can help you break down how to get what you want, and understand what’s really important to you, and why.*      

Need to find an in-network therapist?

Visit AetnaMedicare.com/FindProvider or call Member Services at 1-833-570-6670 (TTY: 711) between 8 AM and 8 PM, 7 days a week. 

Get support when times are tough  

While suicide rates have lowered globally, they unfortunately remain high among older adults.* And those rates tend to spike in the spring.*  We want to make sure you know that your Aetna plan covers certain mental health services. 

You can find coverage details in your Evidence of Coverage (EOC) on your plan web page. You can view this page at any time by typing in the URL or using your smartphone or tablet camera to scan the QR code found on your member ID card. Or call Member Services at 1-833-570-6670 (TTY: 711), 8 AM to 8 PM, 7 days a week.  

During therapy sessions you can work through some of the above challenges. Or you can talk to your counselor about any symptoms of depression, anger, sadness, hopelessness or grief. If you’re having thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself, you should call the federal 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, 24 hours, 7 days a week, for immediate help.  

Get your health questions answered

A registered nurse is just a phone call away. Call our 24-Hour Nurse Line at 1-800-556-1555 (TTY: 711) to speak with a nurse, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If it’s an emergency, dial 911.

*FOR COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY AND PAIN MANAGEMENT SOURCE: Taguchi K, Numata N, Takanashi R, et al. Medicine. Integrated cognitive behavioral therapy for chronic pain: An open-labeled prospective single-arm trial. February 12, 2021. Accessed April 10, 2024.

*FOR COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY AND CHRONIC PAIN SOURCE: Ince B. Journal of Cognitive Behavioral Psychotherapy and Research. Systematic review of the comparative effectiveness of cognitive-behavioural therapies for chronic pain. July 4, 2020. Accessed April 10, 2024. 

*FOR HOW THERAPY BENEFITS RELATIONSHIPS SOURCE: Lukin K. Psychology Today. 5 Proven Therapy Techniques to Improve Relationships. July 3, 2018. Accessed April 10, 2024.

*FOR CHRONIC ILLNESS AND DEPRESSION SOURCE: Hopfner J, Keith N. Frontiers in Psychology. Goal Missed, Self Hit: Goal-Setting, Goal Failure, and Their Affective, Motivational and Behavioral Consequences. September 21, 2021. Accessed April10, 2024.

*FOR THERAPY AND GOAL-SETTING SOURCE: National Institute of Mental Health. Chronic Illness and Mental Health: Recognizing and Treating Depression. Updated 2021. Accessed April 10, 2024.

*FOR SUICIDE STATISTICS AMONG SENIORS SOURCE: Garnett MF, Spencer MR, Weeks JD. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Suicide Among Adults Age 55 and Older, 2021. November 2023. Accessed April 10, 2024. 

*FOR SUICIDE STATISTICS IN SPRING SOURCE: Freichel R, O’Shea BA. Translational Psychiatry. Suicidality and mood: the impact of trends, seasons, day of the week, and time of day on explicit and implicit cognitions among an online community sample. May 12, 2023. Accessed April 10, 2024.   

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