Michael O'Mara

Michael O'Mara

Licensed Mental Health Counselor, LMHC

Accepting new clients


 

Clientele

Young adults / college students (18 - 24)
Adults

Specialties & expertise

  • Anxiety
  • Life stressors
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Trauma
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Compulsive behaviors
  • Depression
  • Relationship issues
  • Sexual identity and LGBTQ issues

Professional statement

Michael is a counselor in Providence, RI specializing in the treatment of anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, trauma, and life stressors. 

Michael uses a combination of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Exposure and Response Prevention, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, Motivational Interviewing, and Mindfulness practices. CBT and ERP are particularly effective for anxiety disorders, including obsessive compulsive disorder. EMDR is effective for treating trauma as well as other issues such as phobias. Motivational Interviewing helps people make healthy decisions in their lives in a way that helps them find the answers that they already have within themselves.

Michael received his MA and CAGS in Counseling from Rhode Island College. He believes in the importance of finding a good therapist that fits the client's needs and works with the client to ensure the therapy approach is working for them. 


Specialties

Anxiety – Generalized anxiety, panic disorder, phobias
Life Stressors – e.g. academic stressors; work stress; mental health issues that are interfering with academics
Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) – Using exposure and response prevention to help clients confront OCD, e.g. concern with and/or fear of germs and becoming 'contaminated'
Trauma – Including dealing with past sexual assault, childhood trauma, environmental trauma (e.g. witnessing/experiencing violence)

General expertise

Bipolar disorder – Episodes of mood swings ranging from depressive lows (feeling sad, low energy) to manic highs (high energy levels, reduced need for sleep)
Compulsive behavior – Includes nail biting and hair pulling / trichotillomania (recurrent, irresistible urges to pull out body hair)
Depression – Sleep and energy disruption, overall mood disturbance, inability to enjoy yourself, and difficulty being motivated, amongst many other symptoms
Relationship issues – Dealing with breakups, wanting to enter a relationship
Sexual identity and LGBTQ issues – Questioning, coming out or not, family reactions, advocacy, safety, new relationships, transgender issues) 


Insurances

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Brown University Student Health Insurance
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
  • Johnson & Wales University
  • Neighborhood Health
  • Providence College
  • Tufts
  • United Health
  • RISD Student Insurance
  • URI / University of Rhode Island Student Insurance
  • Group Insurance Commission (GIC)

Out-of-pocket fees

  • Initial evaluation: $150/session
  • Individual sessions: $75/session (50min)

Message to clients

"My approach is to tailor therapy to the individual, rather than imposing a particular way on them. A lot of people have misconceptions about what therapy is or isn't, and I always encourage clients to ask if they have any questions regarding what therapy will entail or concerns about past experiences with therapy. Unlike with other professionals like lawyers and plumbers, with therapy, your relationship with your therapist is the most important part of the work, and I encourage clients to be open about what is or is not working, and what we can do differently to help you grow."


Treatment approaches

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)In cognitive behavioral therapy, you work with a therapist in a structured way, attending a limited number of sessions. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps you become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking, so you can view challenging situations more clearly and respond to them in a more effective way. (learn more)
Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP)Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy for OCD. In ERP, the client confronts the thoughts, images, objects, and situations that makes the client anxious; then makes a choice not to act upon a compulsive behavior. With ERP a person has to make the commitment to not give in and do the compulsive behavior until they notice a drop in their anxiety. (learn more)
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR)EMDR is a form of trauma treatment that helps process distressing memories and restore the brain's natural healing abilities, reducing the memories' lasting effects and allowing the person to develop more adaptive coping mechanisms. (learn more)
Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)Interpersonal Therapy (IPT) is a time-limited psychotherapy that focuses on interpersonal issues, which are understood to be a factor in the genesis and maintenance of psychological distress. The targets of IPT are symptom resolution, improved interpersonal functioning, and increased social support. (learn more)
Mindfulness PracticesMindfulness practices include but are not limited to developing awareness, attention, and remembering. In mindfulness-informed therapy, clients develop tools to become aware of what is occurring within and around them, so they can begin to untangle from mental preoccupations and difficult emotions. Self-acceptance and compassion are also core elements of mindfulness-informed therapy. (learn more)
Motivational interviewing Motivational interviewing is a form of collaborative conversation for strengthening a person's own motivation and commitment to change. It is a person-centered counseling style for addressing the common problem of ambivalence about change by paying particular attention to the language of change. It is designed to strengthen an individual's motivation for and movement toward a specific goal by eliciting and exploring the person's own reasons for change within an atmosphere of acceptance and compassion. (learn more)
Supportive TherapySupportive psychotherapy is used primarily to reinforce a patient’s ability to cope with stressors by giving clients the opportunity to express their feelings and thoughts about the issues. Clinicians help patients learn how to move forward and make decisions or changes that may be necessary to adapt, either to an acute change, such as the loss of a loved one or severe disappointment, or to a chronic situation, such as an ongoing illness. (learn more)


Education and work experience

Private Practice, 2014 - Present
Rhode Island College Dept of Counseling, Adjunct Faculty, 2014 - Present
The Providence Center, Clinical Therapist, 2014 - 2015
Gateway Healthcare, Emergency Services Clinician, 2011 - 2015
OCD Research Study, Consultant/Therapist/Coach, 2011 - 2015
Gateway Healthcare, Clinical Specialist, 2012 - 2014

Rhode Island College, CAGS, Counseling, 2014
Rhode Island College, MA, Counseling, 2011


Languages

English


Professional endorsements

Michael is knowledgeable, kind, and is great at building relationships that heal.
— Michele Laferte, LMHC (2016)