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Counselors and the counseling profession have a lot of acronyms and terminology that can be confusing.  Here are some common terms that you might see.


EMDR- Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing- A therapeutic modality used to treat many mental health conditions.

CBT-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy- A popular type of therapy used to treat many mental health conditions. 

PTSD- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder-A diagnosis that many practitioners use EMDR to treat.

GAD- Generalized Anxiety Disorder- A common anxiety disorder.

MDD- Major Depressive Disorder- A diagnosis used to describe when a client is experiencing depression symptoms.

Adjustment Disorder-This is a diagnosis given when a person is going through a transition and is experiencing symptoms related to that transition.

Professional Documents

Disclosure Statement- This is the basic agreement between you and your therapist that defines the therapeutic relationship. It also outlines your rights as a client. 

ROI-Release of Information- This document allows your counselor to communicate protected health information to other professionals in order to help coordinate care.

Consent- This document states that you are aware of the benefits and risks associated with therapy and that you agree to them. 

Professional Credentials

DORA- Department of Regulatory Agencies- The state run organization that licenses and looks over the practice of counseling. Visit their website at:

LPC- Licensed Professional Counselor- DORA regulates the practice of counseling, and after two years of post graduate degree study, a counselor can apply to be licensed to practice. the Division of Professions and Occupations deals directly with licensing counselors.  You can find more information about them at:

Certified Addictions Technician, Certified Addictions Specialist, LAC- There are three levels of professionals that can help with addiction counseling in Colorado.  The lowest level is a Certified Addictions Technician.  The next level is a Certified Addictions Specialist.  They must have at least a master's degree and complete coursework on addictions. A Licensed Addictions Counselor has the same requirements as a Certified Addictions Specialist, but they can also supervise Certified Addictions Specials and Certified Addictions Technicians.  DORA also regulates these occupations.  Visit them at:

NCC-Nationally Certified Counselor- An optional credential that counselors have to pass an exam to be a part of.  100 hours of continuing education must be completed every five years in order to remain in active status.  Learn more about them at:

Financial Terminology

HSA- Health Savings Account- This is an option when you are choosing your health insurance plan.  You can use your Health Savings Account to pay for your counseling services. 

FSA-Flex Spending Account- This is another option when you are choosing your health insurance plan.  You can also use your Flex Spending Account to pay for counseling services.

Private Pay Only- This term means that a counselor does not bill your insurance company directly.  You pay out of pocket for your counseling services.

Superbill- A document that your counselor can give you, when they do not paneled with insurance companies, with the information you would need in order to submit the service to your insurance company on your own.