Hello & Welcome

Thank you for visiting my website. I am Ai Ikunaga, PsyD, a licensed psychologist in PA with an independent practice in Center City, Philadelphia. I am a bilingual therapist and can conduct therapy in both English and Japanese.

In addition to generalist training in the treatment of various mental health concerns, such as anxiety, depression, relationship concerns, or adjustment to life changes, my interest and areas of expertise include the treatment of:

  • Eating Disorders/Disordered Eating
  • Mental health concerns of individuals who belong to ethnic/racial minority groups
  • Cross cultural issues related to immigration/multicultural background
  • Trauma
  • Emotional Dysregulation

Approaches/Philosophy

In my practice, I use both skill-based approaches as well as a relational approach that attends to connections we make in our lives and their impact on our present lives. I value the importance of understanding a person as a whole in a cultural context and treating a person with respect. I also value the importance of mindfulness, in my personal life and in clinical practice. Cultivating mindfulness can help us live our lives more fully, by attending to the present moment without judgment and with openness and kindness. Mindfulness skills can help us redirect our attention when we find ourselves ruminating about the past or worrying about the future, and they can lead to new perspectives and more options for how we respond to life situations. I have been trained and continue to cultivate my skills in the following:

  • Relational Psychodynamic Approach
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Mindfulness Practice: Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction   

About Me

Ai Ikunaga, PsyD
Licensed Psychologist

Mindfulness Meditaion

I obtained a Doctor of Psychology degree from the Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology at Widener University. Prior to becoming a psychologist, I obtained my Master of Arts degree in Music Therapy from Drexel University and practiced as a Licensed Music Therapist. My unique clinical background has helped me understand the importance of non-verbal communication and focus on strengths as well as creativity.

During my clinical experience, I was fortunate to have worked with individuals of diverse backgrounds who are struggling with various mental health concerns at different levels of care, including residential, partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient, and outpatient levels of care. I am grateful to have received specialized training in the treatment of Eating Disorders at the Renfrew Center of Philadelphia as well as at Monte Nido, in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy for the treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder at Belmont Psychological Associates, and in Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing through the EMDR Institute. In addition, I completed the Practicum in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Professionals at Jefferson-Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine and I continue to cultivate my own practice in mindfulness. I intend to bring in attitudes of non-judging, patience, beginner’s mind, and acceptance in working with people. I also value using humor and enjoy laughing with clients. For fun, I love gardening, dancing, spending time with my family and playing with my dog.

Some of my training and work experiences include the following:

  • Belmont Psychological Associates Outpatient Department- General Outpt & DBT team
  • Monte Nido & Affiliates-Eating Disorder Center of Philadelphia
  • Temple University-Tuttleman Counseling Services
  • Renfrew Center: Residential Treatment for Eating Disorders
  • Albert Einstein Medical Center-Outpatient Psychiatry
  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania



My Services

Individual Therapy

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Clinical Consultation

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Mindfulness Skills

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EMDR
Therapy

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Before the First Session

Please print and fill out this form before arriving for the first session.

First Session Form


Some Commonly Asked Questions

What is therapy like?

Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous therapy session. Depending on your specific needs, therapy can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult patterns or your desire for more personal growth and self-awareness. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions usually weekly.

It is important to understand that you will benefit from therapy if you actively participate in the process. In between sessions, I may suggest some things you can do outside of therapy, such as journaling, practicing certain skills, or logging of your thoughts/feelings/actions/physical sensations to raise self-awareness.
Do you take insurance?
Although I do not take health insurance, my services may be covered in full or in-part by your health insurance as "Out-of-Network Mental Health/Behavioral Health Services."

Please contact your insurance company and ask if you have "Out-of-Network Outpatient Mental Health/Behavioral Health Benefits." Please check your coverage by asking questions such as the following:
  • Do I have out-of-network, outpatient, mental health/behavioral health insurance benefits?
  • What is my deductible and has it been met?
  • How many sessions per year does my health insurance cover?
  • What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
  • Is approval required from my primary care physician?
Do you offer reduced fees?
Reduced fee services are available on a limited basis for clients with financial difficulties.
What is your cancellation policy?
Please let me know within 24 hrs if you need to cancel your appointment. Otherwise, you will incur a fee equivalent to 50% of your full session cost.
What forms of payment do you accept?
Cash, Check, Credit Cards

Contact Me Today...

245 South 16th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
(267) 918-1428
This form for general inquiries only, please do not send any private medical information through this form.