Psychiatric Evaluation (Initial)
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A psychiatric evaluation is a 30-to-90-minute appointment with a psychiatrist to diagnose mental health issues and determine if prescription medication is right for you.
Psychiatry Vs. Psychology Evaluation
Psychiatrists and psychologists work hand-in-hand to provide patients with a holistic view of mental healthcare. Many mental health professionals believe that you can’t treat mental disorders without either psychiatric or psychotherapy.
Psychiatry simply treats a biological condition; whereas, psychology treats behavioral issues and negative thought patterns. Psychiatrists use prescription medications to treat such issues, and online therapists use talk therapy to change negative thoughts and behavioral patterns.
Some psychiatrists are also psychologists, but the major difference is that psychologists don’t have a medical degree, so they can’t write prescriptions. Psychiatrists are essentially medical doctors that specialize in mental health.
Benefits of a Psychiatric Evaluation
The main benefits of a psychiatric evaluation include:
- Get diagnosed by a medical professional
- Find out if medication is right for you
- Chat with a psychiatrist to convey your concerns about medication
- Rule out any major mental health conditions
What to Expect During Your First Psychiatric Evaluation
Most of your time during an initial psychiatric evaluation is spent filling out questionnaires and answering oral questions. Your doctor will use this time to determine if medication is right for you — and diagnose any major mental illnesses.
During this question-and-answer period, your psychiatrist will also take note of how you respond to certain questions and assess your overall mental state.
Most of the questions will revolve around your current lifestyle, medical history, family history, and mental health concerns. Most psych evaluations take 30-to-90 minutes to complete.