Head to Toe Health Centre
71 Oxford Street
Toronto, ON M5T 1P2

416 203 6500


Your body has the ability to heal itself. It just needs your assistance.

What is Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy is a therapeutic process which helps people to understand and resolve their problems through increased awareness of their inner world and its influence over feelings, relationships, decisions, behavioural patterns, and even somatic responses (sensations in the body, such as insomnia, or asthma).

The goal of psychotherapy is to help individuals overcome their difficulties in day-to- day living so that they can live fuller, more creative, satisfying lives.

Who sees a Psychotherapist?

A great many people seek psychotherapy for a wide range of difficulties such as: depression, anxiety, panic attacks, low self-esteem, lack of confidence, eating disorders, relationship difficulties, family troubles, social and work related difficulties, phobias, substance abuse, obsessive compulsive disorders, gender issues, self destructive and other destructive behaviour.

You don’t have to be mentally ill to see a psychotherapist. Those who experience a general loss of meaning in their lives or who are seeking a greater sense of fulfillment will be helped by psychotherapy.

What type of Psychotherapy do I practice?

Providing that our physical needs have been met, it seems as though we humans are motivated primarily by our emotional life as opposed to intellectual or rational thought. It is for this reason that intellectual insight is not the same as emotional insight – intellectual insight is fleeting, whereby emotional insight resonates at a deeper level and leads to ongoing change.

My training is in a form of psychotherapy called psychoanalytic psychodynamic psychotherapy, which differs from most other therapies, in that it aims to understand and change deep-seated, and often unconscious, emotional tensions and conflicts, which affect our behaviours, feelings, and relationships, thereby bringing about lasting change.

In psychoanalytic psychodynamic psychotherapy, therapists help people review emotions, thoughts, early-life experiences, and beliefs to gain insight into their inner lives and their present-day problems and to evaluate the patterns they have developed over time. Recognizing recurring patterns helps people to see the ways in which they have developed coping mechanisms called ‘defenses’. With newfound awareness regarding these defensive strategies, clients can take steps to change their behaviour patterns, improving their relationships, and overall quality of life.

Psychoanalytic psychodynamic psychotherapy draws on psychoanalytic theory but its practice is less intense than psychoanalysis. For example, in psychoanalytic psychodynamic psychotherapy, the patient sits across from the therapist instead of lying down as they do in psychoanalysis, and the frequency of visits is once to twice weekly, as opposed to 3-5 times weekly, as it is in psychoanalysis.

Why is the first visit free?

A strong therapeutic relationship is central to psychodynamic therapy as it is only through trust and understanding that insight can be gained and change can occur. Furthermore, the therapeutic relationship itself can demonstrate the manner in which you interact with your friends and loved ones and may help you to see your part in relationship patterns. There is a wealth of information available in the therapeutic dynamic itself, however, only trust and a feeling of connection to your therapist will allow you to access that information in order for your therapy to be most effective.

The initial session 30 minute session is offered free of charge in order to provide you with an opportunity to experience our therapeutic dynamic and decide if it is right for you.

For more about Psychotherapy with Dr Karen Hack visit psychotherapywithkaren.ca

Book Free Initial Psychotherapy