John Thomas Sandy, Psy.D.

Dr. Sandy received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Alabama in Huntsville in 1976, a Master of Arts in Psychology in 1979 and his Doctor of Psychology from Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in 1990.  

His professional experiences prior to private practice began in 1976 where he began working in the mental health field as a group home manager in Scottsboro AL when Alabama was releasing long term residents of Bryce Hospital back into the community. He also served as a psychological assistant during graduate school at what was then known as the UAB Center for Developmental and Learning Disorders, now the Sparks Center. He came to Huntsville in 1979 and worked at the Huntsville-Madison County Mental Health Center for almost ten years serving as a therapist/psychodiagnostician in the Child and Family Services and as a therapist and Employee Assistance Coordinator in Adult Services. He was the Clinical Director of the Family Life Center, a local outpatient addictions and mental health treatment center, for two years.

Dr. Sandy has been in private practice of psychotherapy since 1992 During his years in private practice he has been a counselor and stockholder at the Key Pastoral Counseling Center and a psychologist/stockholder at Summit Psychotherapy P.C. He worked at the Longwood Psychological Center from 2010-2017 when he moved to the Hearth Psychology and Counseling Center where he is currently practicing.

Dr. Sandy works with children, adolescents, adults and seniors. He sees clients in individual, couple, and family psychotherapy.

Dr. Sandy is a member of the American Psychological Association, and the Alabama Psychological Association. He is a member of the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis (ASCH). He has received certification in hypnosis from ASCH and has attained the status of Approved Consultant in hypnosis.

Dr. Sandy utilizes an integrative orientation which draws from his education, and experience in cognitive/behavioral psychology, interpersonal, and family systems theories. 

He has also been trained in techniques for treating PTSD and teaches anxiety reduction skills. 

People usually do not request help until they have run out of ideas and options. Efforts to fix problems fade as frustration, anxiety and depression replaces hope. In this state of desperation the call to the therapist office is made. Psychotherapy begins with a Diagnostic Interview in which an overview of the client’s experiences and the problem which they caused them to seek help.  Psychological and behavioral problems may be the result of genetic predisposition, family dynamics and can be the cause of unconscious reactions, reflexes, or emotions. These are often the source of continued psychological and interpersonal dysfunction. Psychotherapy can ease or eliminate problems so that the client feels a return of emotional self-control and a return to a better quality of life. The positive results of psychotherapy are the product of a positive client and therapist relationship, working through difficult past events/traumas and building new patterns of thought and behavior. Therapy requires a willingness to go into problems where the past contaminates the present and to put effort into a change process that develops from psychotherapy. 

Dr. Sandy has worked with clients on a wide range of psychological and relationship problems including anxiety, depression, Bipolar Disorder, ADHD, anger management and other mood and emotional problems. He has been effective in specific anxiety disorders such Panic Disorder, phobias, PTSD and OCD.  He works with couples and families in developing better communication and problem solving skills. He has helped parents to find solutions to parenting problems and child behavior management. His work in hypnosis has been effective in helping clients recover from addictions, sexual disorders, headaches, chronic pain, fibromyalgia and IBS.  He has worked with athletes and artists to improve quality and consistency in performance and productivity.