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    No matter what type of issue you are struggling with, therapy is a positive way to open up to a certified professional who can help you discuss and solve problems in a safe and confidential setting. Several years ago, Mayor Rahm Emanuel launched Healthy Chicago, an initiative designed to improve the health of local residents. It included 12 city goals, with 193 strategies to help reach the goals. Since its launch, Healthy Chicago is proud to announce that 45% of the 193 strategies are in place, with another 47% in progress.

    As Chicago takes initiative to improve the overall health of its residents, they also opened the discussion about mental health, an important aspect of overall health. The mental health reform project provides support to various sites around the city where both insured and uninsured patients can receive counseling and therapy. Some insurance plans do cover counseling, so patients can check with insurance providers to find out whether they have this benefit.

    Chicago also has a large LGBT community, so it is home to therapy experts who specialize in counseling for related issues. These may include abuse, access to care, HIV, and other STI prevention, and educating healthcare providers about fair treatment. Many therapists believe strongly that regular counseling can help anyone who is trying to cope with the difficulties that life can bring.

    Whether you are struggling with marital problems or relationships with family members, obsessive behaviors that prevent you from living a normal life, or being unable to form a healthy relationship with food, a licensed therapist can provide support and help that others simply can’t offer in the same open, professional, and positive way.

    You may have questions about mental health resources in your community, but feel ashamed or embarrassed. Mental health is a widely accepted part of overall health, and therapists will help you discuss struggles and work out solutions on your own. The National Institute of Mental Health offers detailed information about conditions and solutions, where you can learn more about specific behaviors or disorders. There are also local and national hotline numbers that provide immediate assistance to those who feel helpless and out of control.

    Some of the areas that therapy can help with include anxiety and depression, bipolar disorder, marriage and fertility problems, PTSD, abuse, grief and loss, divorce, and stress management. Some therapists will focus on one specific area, only taking clients who suffer from a certain problem, while others offer a broad range of counseling services and advice, which can help an entire family.

    Taking care of your health is important. So is taking care of your emotional and mental health. If you are looking for a counselor or therapist in the Chicago area, know that you have many options. Contact your healthcare provider to see what’s available to you.