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Client Concerns

Common Mental Health Concerns

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Therapy can help with a wide range of concerns.

Some may seek therapy for help with managing mental health conditions like depression or anxiety. Some may seek therapy to address major life changes, such as the loss of someone close to us, a career change, or a divorce.

Regardless of your reasons for coming to therapy, we are here to offer compassionate and evidence-based psychological services to help you live your best life. Therapy can be helpful for managing a variety of issues and can empower you to improve your relationships and your life.

Man using virtual therapy services

Common Concerns

Here is a list of common concerns we work with at Saterra Psychological & Counselling Services.


Individuals with depression may experience a deep sadness that doesn’t seem to go away. They may lose interest or pleasure in the people and things in their lives that once made them happy. Depression can lead to struggling with low self-esteem, changes in appetite, suicidal thoughts, self-harm, difficulty sleeping, guilt, irritability, decreased sex drive, and other difficult issues. Although medication can help, research shows that a combination of therapy and medication is especially effective in helping individuals cope with depression. Saterra’s skilled psychologists and therapists are trained to help you learn to manage your depression.


Saterra’s associate psychologists and therapists are trained in a number of therapeutic approaches that can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety.

Generalized Anxiety

Individuals with generalized anxiety often feel overwhelmed with worry, even when there may be little or no reason to worry. They may be experiencing spiraling thoughts about things going badly that are hard to stop. Anxiety can disrupt your work/academic life, social life and/or home life.

Social Anxiety

Individuals with a social type of anxiety often feel a fear of being the centre of attention, judged, or criticized in a social setting. They may experience excessive anxiety around presentations, dating, job interviews, speaking in class or in work meetings, meeting new people, group gatherings, etc. This can lead to avoiding situations or experiencing extreme discomfort in social settings.

Panic Disorder

Individuals with panic disorder may experience recurrent and unexpected panic attacks. These can involve accelerated heart rate or pounding heart beats, chest pain, sweating, trembling, shortness of breath, a choking sensation, nausea, dizziness or light-headedness. A person having a panic attack may feel that they are dying or feel like they are losing control. This can be very disruptive to one’s overall functioning.

Trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD)

Individuals who experience, witness, or hear about an extremely stressful situation may also undergo psychological trauma associated with some of the following symptoms: intrusive memories, numbness, anxiety, difficulty concentrating or sleeping, nightmares, fear and difficulty trusting people. Individuals who have experienced trauma may experience hyperviligance – feeling like they are constantly in danger and that the world is not a safe place. Trauma can also cause flashbacks – feeling like you are back in the traumatic situation as if it is really happening again.

Some people experience a traumatic event once in their lifetime (e.g., being in a severe car crash), others multiple times (e.g., in multiple military tours or in an emergency-related career such as first responders), and some on a constant basis, as with those who endure domestic or child abuse. Whether you’ve experienced a traumatic event many years ago, recently, or are currently in this situation, healing from trauma is possible, and many strategies are available to help you feel safe again.

Stress and Workplace Stress

Feeling stressed can lead to many physical and emotional challenges. You may feel overwhelmed, anxious or have difficulty concentrating and sleeping. You may also experience physical symptoms like headaches, muscle tension, stomach issues, teeth grinding and jaw-clenching. Stress at home or in the workplace can lead to feelings of helplessness, irritability, fatigue, depressed mood, decreased sexual desire, avoidance and changes in appetite.

Therapy can help you regain control over your life by learning various techniques to manage your stress. With insight into underlying difficulties that maintain or increase high stress levels, you can reduce your stress and improve your quality of life and overall functioning.


Difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep can lead to a number of physical or emotional challenges if left untreated. Our skilled therapists can help you understand the nature of your sleep difficulties and help build skills to improve sleep.

If you are struggling with sleep, you may experience some of the following: difficulties falling or staying asleep, waking up too early in the morning and not being able to get back to sleep, and feeling exhausted or unrefreshed. Significant sleep difficulties can lead to irritability, a depressed mood, and stress and worry around sleep.

Therapy, for example CBT-I, can help you regain control over your life by learning behavioural and cognitive techniques to reduce or eliminate the negative impact that sleep difficulties have on your life. With insight into underlying problems that maintain or increase sleep difficulties, you can consistently get a good night’s sleep and improve your overall functioning.

Relationship Difficulties

Navigating relationships with loved ones, friends, and co-workers may be difficult at times. Experiencing complications or conflict in these relationships is not uncommon. We often find ourselves feeling that we have difficulty forming or maintaining relationships, or feeling lonely even when surrounded by others. Stress, conflict and disagreement can also cause relationship difficulties. Relationship difficulties can in turn lead to feelings of stress, anxiety, depression, loneliness, isolation, anger or fear of being alone.

Saterra associate psychologists and therapists are trained in a number of techniques to help you better understand these patterns and better relate to, and feel safe and confident with, the people in your life. Through therapy, you can learn how to better communicate with others, manage conflict, and maintain or build relationships with the people who are important to you.

Managing Difficult Emotions and Life Transitions

Tolerating and Managing Emotions

Some emotions can be very difficult to understand and others we may prefer to avoid. Learning to tolerate your emotions is important for maintaining a well-balanced life. Anger, for example, can lead to many challenges, including relationship problems, acting/lashing out at others, and feeling out of control.

Grief and Loss

Feelings of grief or loss arise when we are impacted by the death of a dear one, world events or major life transitions (e.g. divorce, retirement). Saterra’s caring and compassionate associate psychologists and therapists can help you make sense of your grief and associated feelings.

Life Transitions

Individuals going through life transitions may experience a number of emotional symptoms such as fear, worry, grief or loss and stress. You may be experiencing difficulty adapting to a recent or upcoming change such as transitioning to post-secondary school, a new job, moving to a new home or city, having children, unexpected or unwanted lifestyle changes, retiring, becoming care-givers to your parents, etc. Therapy can help you better adapt to and process the impact of the major changes in your life.

Get started with online therapy.

We can provide convenient, effective and professional psychological services in Ottawa, Kanata, Stittsville, the Ottawa Valley and beyond. You’ve already taken the first step in getting to experience everything virtual therapy has to offer just by being here. Reach out to get started.