Psychiatrists are medical doctors (MD or DO) specializing in treating a wide range of illnesses affecting the mind and brain. Thanks to rigorous and extensive training, psychiatrists are authorized to assess both mental and physical aspects of psychological problems, and may prescribe medications accordingly.
Some of the reasons people see psychiatrists include:
- Panic attacks
- Hearing voices
- Having hallucinations
- Suicidal thoughts
- Feelings of helplessness and/or hopelessness
Despite these being problems of the mind, these afflictions can affect all reaches of our lives, including our relationships, jobs, and academic pursuits. When these conditions persist over time, not only can they become increasingly complex, but serious consequences can spill into all corners of our lives.
While we commonly think of these issues affecting our mind, they can also speak to problems of the brain. The distinction between these is that we can see the brain, but the mind is the invisible, transcendent realm of thought, feelings, beliefs, and imagination. Psychiatrists specialize in both. For this reason, they often go beyond question/answer sessions and discussions. They’ll perform examinations, do laboratory tests, and order brain scans. In so doing, they seek any physical links between problems of the mind and physical symptoms of the brain.
After compiling data from all testing, they’re able to reach correct clinical diagnoses. (“Diagnoses” is defined as symptoms clusters identified and agreed upon by the American Psychiatric Association in what they call DSM-5, which is 5th edition (published 2013) of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders).
Psychiatrists can employ multiple treatment strategies. These can include Psychotherapy, medications, psycho-social interventions, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), and beyond.
In regards to medications, several classes are often used to great results:
- Antidepressants are used to treat depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), borderline personality disorder (BPD) and eating disorders
- Stimulants can treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Antipsychotic medications can treat psychotic symptoms (delusions and hallucinations) of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and mood disorders
- Sedatives and hypnotics can treat anxiety and sleeping problems
- Mood stabilizers/anti-epileptics can treat bipolar disorder
Psychiatrists aim to put you on a path to better controlling conditions that may be interfering in your ability to lead a stable, manageable life. Contact us at American Wellness Center if you’d like to explore the science of the mind to see if there’s a solution applicable to your life.
More Psychiatric Resources:
- American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry
- American Association for Emergency Psychiatry
- World Psychiatric Association
- American Association of Community Psychiatrists
- American Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
- American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry
- Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine
- Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists
Programs Offered by Our Psychiatric Department:
- Executive Guidance And Coaching Program
- Family Paradigm Analysis
Frequently Asked Questions
Sometimes. Each insurance company plan is different, so it’s imperative you check your specific coverage. Recently, insurance companies have begun expanding coverage for mental health, as employers realize mental health affects the workforce to a greater degree than previously thought. Today, more patients are finding they can get at least a portion of their services reimbursed.
If your coverage brochure or booklet isn’t clear, contact your insurance company directly to see what is covered. If needed, we can try to help you figure out what your coverage allows and then budget accordingly.
Simply put, “Occupational Therapy” is therapy designed to bring people independence in everyday life. This therapy can be helpful to people of all age groups, whether it’s children who have motor skills or processing challenges, or adults who’ve faced changes in their day-to-day ability to function through illness or accidents.
Whoever the patient is, a therapist’s primary goal is to help them accomplish tasks and activities with confidence and ease.
This can include anything affected by gross motor, fine motor, visual motor, and sensory motor skills. It can also aid in the ability to process requests and what is needed to accomplish tasks.
For children, adults, or elderly patients facing challenges with routine daily activities, like eating, dressing, bathing, and beyond, occupational therapy can be immensely helpful in teaching coping skills to help them in their day-to-day in a way that accommodates their limitations. For more information, please see our Occupational Services page or arrange for a consultation with our clinician.