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Behavioral Health Professionals

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Counseling & Therapy

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How can I get into counseling?

All you need to do is call the toll-free number on your insurance ID card. We will assist you in maximizing your benefits. There is no hassle or paperwork for services provided by an in-network provider. Your behavioral health professional will take care of all ongoing authorizations (if required), forms and claims processing.

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Can I call and talk to a "live" person if I have questions?

CBH staff are available 24 hours a day to help obtain information on anything from urgent clinical needs to Work/Life issues, and would be happy to help with any needs you have. Also, if you have CBH's employee assistance (EAP) or integrated programs, continue to call CBH first to gain full access to your available benefits and the help of our Personal Advocates.

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Why would my primary care physician recommend that I see a psychiatrist?

Perhaps your primary care physician is seeking a second opinion. Or maybe he/she is making this recommendation so that you can get the help you need from a more specialized doctor.

Don't be afraid to ask your primary care physician about the recommendation and how he/she intends to treat this specific issue.

We recommend that you sign a Release of Information in order for your physician and behavioral health professional to coordinate your care.

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What if my child needs to see a therapist?

If you feel your child may need to see a therapist, and you want or need assistance in finding one, contact Cigna Behavioral Health by dialing the toll-free number on your insurance ID card. Cigna Behavioral Health contracts with behavioral health professionals who specialize in childhood issues and family therapy. You will be referred to a professional in your area who will work with you, your child and your family to identify the problem and put a plan in place to treat it.

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How do I know if therapy can help me?

Studies show that behavioral health services may be helpful if you have any of the following symptoms every day for a two-week duration.

Depressed mood
Loss of interest or pleasure
Significant weight loss or gain
Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
Loss of energy
Difficulty concentrating

There are also many other situations when therapy can be helpful. If you are having any physical symptoms, please make sure to check with your primary care physician or family physician immediately. Below is an overview of additional signs and symptoms where therapy may be helpful:

  • Intense fear or discomfort

    If you have a period of intense fear or discomfort lasting about ten minutes or more where the following symptoms may occur, behavioral health services may be helpful.

    Pounding heart
    Sweating
    Shaking
    Feeling of choking
    Dizziness
    Fear of dying
    Chest pain
  • Unmanageable stress

    If you have stress that you are finding unmanageable and are experiencing any or all of the following signs and symptoms, behavioral health services may be helpful.

    Difficulty sleeping
    Difficulty concentrating
    Forgetfulness
    Change in appetite
    Preoccupied thoughts
    Difficulty completing tasks
    Irritability
    Loss of energy
    Mood swings
    Headaches
    Stomach aches
    Palpitations
  • Relationship issues impacting your quality of life

    If you are having relationship issues that are impacting your quality of life, and are experiencing any or all of the following signs and symptoms, behavioral health services may be helpful.

    Inability to maintain relationships
    Inability to keep close relationships
    Communication problems in your relationships
    Arguments with your spouse or significant other
    Lack of trust in relationships
    Physical Abuse
    Emotional Abuse
    Codependence
  • A potential problem with drugs or alcohol

    If you have or suspect you have a problem with drug or alcohol, and are experiencing any or all of the following signs and symptoms, behavioral health services may be helpful.

    Preoccupation with drugs or alcohol
    Inability to cut down on drug or alcohol consumption
    Guilt over drinking or using
    Concern about usage by self or others
    Drugs or alcohol interfere with work/school
    Drugs or alcohol interfere with relationships
    Legal problems (DUI)
    Most of your paycheck goes to support drug or alcohol consumption
    Tremors/shakes if you stop using drugs or alcohol
    Engaging in "risky" behavior when using drugs or alcohol
    Blackouts
  • A potential eating disorder

    If you suspect that you may have an eating disorder or related problem and are experiencing any or all of the following signs and symptoms, behavioral health services may be helpful.

    Preoccupation with food
    Restricting food intake
    Rapid weight gain/loss
    Binging
    Purging
    Use of laxatives for weight loss
    Others tell you that you have a distorted body image
    Physical problems (fainting, dental, stomach aches)

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How do I prepare for therapy?

Many people find their progress in therapy improves quickly when they focus on specific issues or problems. Before your first appointment ask yourself these questions:

  • What is my current problem?
  • What steps have I taken in the past to deal with this problem?
  • What do I hope to accomplish through therapy?


The answers to these questions will give valuable information to your behavioral health professional and help you benefit from your treatment.

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How do I know if medication will help?

Medication may be prescribed for a variety of conditions, most commonly depression and anxiety.

Of course, there may be symptoms or other conditions that would require medication. Your behavioral health professional will be the best source of information about treatment approaches, including medications.

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Will I need to be hospitalized?

Most problems are usually treated effectively in an outpatient setting. However, hospitalization may be necessary for a variety of reasons. Some examples include:

  • You or a family member is in need of 24-hour care
  • Stabilizing an acute psychiatric illness
  • If you currently feel you are in danger of hurting yourself or someone else
  • If you are withdrawing from alcohol or drugs and have a medical condition that could make the withdrawal process life-threatening

Remember, our staff is available 24 hours a day 7 days a week if you need help accessing benefits and treatment through our contracted provider network. You can call us by dialing the toll-free number on your insurance ID card for assistance.

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What other resources may be helpful to supplement my treatment?

There are many community resources and self-help books available. If you have Internet connectivity, you can do a search by typing in your topic or issue and getting a listing of Web sites for all kinds of organizations and resources. If you do not have Internet connectivity, call us at the Mental Health/Substance Abuse toll-free number on your insurance ID card, and we will help you find a community resource. Or go to your local library.

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When should I expect to see results?

During your first session or two you should discuss goals with your therapist so he/she will have a better understanding of what you would like to get accomplished. Together, you and your therapist will develop a treatment plan to help you accomplish the goals you've discussed.

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What if I need more than the maximum number of visits included in my benefit plan?

Often, people find relief from their difficulties within five to eight sessions. Most behavioral health benefit plans cover more than eight sessions per year. Our contracted behavioral health professionals will work with you to develop a comprehensive, efficient and effective treatment plan.

If you have exceeded the maximum number of visits covered under your benefit plan in a calendar year or in a lifetime (which very rarely happens), your professional may be able to work with you to assist you in finding helpful resources in the community or to develop a payment plan so that you can continue to work with him/her.

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What if I'm not improving?

First, talk with your behavioral health professional about your concerns. Cigna Behavioral Health care managers work closely with your behavioral health professional to promote the most effective and efficient use of your plan benefits. In order to maximize the benefits available to you, we ask the behavioral health professional to discuss your progress with us as the course of treatment continues. If your symptoms are not improving, Cigna Behavioral Health and your professional will discuss the situation and determine if additional resources are needed.

If you feel your current course of treatment is not adequate, we want to know. Please contact us at the toll-free number listed on your insurance ID card.

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How will I know when I no longer need therapy?

You and your behavioral health professional together will develop a treatment plan based on what you feel you need to accomplish in therapy. A part of the treatment plan will be to determine when you have met all of your goals. Once you have met your treatment goals, therapy is no longer considered necessary.

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How confidential is therapy?

The things you discuss with your therapist, and even the fact that you are in therapy, are completely confidential unless one of the following situations occurs: 1) If a client in counseling reveals homicidal or suicidal intentions, the counselor is bound by law to take steps to protect life. 2) If a client reveals abuse of a child or vulnerable adult (elderly or disabled), the therapist is required to report it to the local Department of Social Services. 3) Finally, a court can order the release of a therapist’s records or order a therapist to testify in court.

I've never talked with a therapist. What do I say at my first session?

Just start by describing the reason you are there and what you’d like to get out of coming. Your therapist will ask questions as needed to help you get started and to get the relevant information.

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How do I describe my problem to a therapist? It's uncomfortable and I'm embarrassed.

You can start with whatever is on your mind, and eventually you’ll cover the important points. Therapists understand your discomfort and embarrassment, and know how to help put you at ease. Most people get over their discomfort once they have been talking for a few minutes.

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What should I expect from outpatient therapy? Results in five sessions? An immediate “cure?”

Of course, the speed with which you will see results varies with a lot of factors, including the nature of your problem, how much and how fast you are willing to make changes in your life, and so forth. Most people can expect significant positive results within five sessions, and sometimes sooner. Getting at the tougher issues may take a little longer.

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My family-member is resistant to treatment. How do I break through? How do I get my loved one to consider treatment?

If your loved one doesn’t want to go to treatment, go ahead and go by yourself. This shows them that you are serious about changing the situation. The therapist will talk to you about what you can do on your own, and oftentimes changes in one member of a family lead to changes in others. And many times those others become more willing to go and “have their say” once they see that you are following through.

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Where can I go to understand what level of benefits coverage I have for mental health for me and my family?

It is important to know exactly what your behavioral benefits are since they may be different than your medical benefits. In order to learn more about your specific behavioral health benefits, you can contact Cigna Behavioral Health by calling the number listed on your insurance identification card. Our staff will help you to identify what is covered under your benefit plan and help you to access the appropriate referrals.

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