Everyone struggles with their mental health at different times in life. Just like any other aspect of your health, when your mental health begins to impact your quality of life, it may mean it is time to seek treatment by seeing a psychiatrist. For many people, that decision can be overwhelming and may even bring up anxieties or fear. That’s why it is essential to inform yourself about what psychiatrists do, the available mental health treatments, and when it may be in your best interest to visit a psychiatrist. Call South Tampa Psychiatry at 866.273.5017 today to connect with one of our expert psychiatrists.
What Does a Psychiatrist Do?
Your perception of a psychiatrist may be a bespectacled doctor listening while someone reclines on a couch, spilling their soul. However, the profession has come a long way from that historical stereotype. Psychiatry is not mysterious and is like any other branch of the medical profession. Psychiatrists specialize in mental health, like how cardiologists specialize in treating heart conditions.
Psychiatrists diagnose mental health disorders, and, unlike psychologists, they are also able to prescribe medication as part of treating their patients. Visiting a psychiatrist begins with a discussion of your medical history and current symptoms. It may involve a physical exam, lab tests, or a complete psychological evaluation.
After a psychiatrist makes a diagnosis, they will develop a mental health treatment plan for you that may include any of the following:
- Medications, such as antidepressants or antipsychotics
- Brain stimulation therapies, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation
- Evidence-based therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy
Each of these treatment options can lead to improved mental health symptoms and a healthier lifestyle.
When You Should See a Psychiatrist
Deciding when your mental health symptoms require treatment can be a difficult decision. It can be easy to rationalize mental health struggles to a level that makes you think treatment is unnecessary. Seeing a psychiatrist is a personal decision that will look different for everyone. Nonetheless, the following list includes a series of signs that may mean it is time to seek professional help to support your mental health.
A Doctor Has Ruled Out Physical Ailments
Making an informed judgment on the cause of your mental health struggles often involves visiting a general practitioner to rule out physical diseases. Many physical problems can also cause psychological issues, so it is essential to work closely with your doctor to understand whether or not there is a directly treatable physical cause.
Persistent Anxiety, Worry, or Depression
Anxiety, worry, and depression are normal occurrences in life. However, there is a difference between a bad week and feelings of anxiety or depression that last for months and feel unshakeable. Have negative emotions taken over your life and persisted to the point that they interrupt your routines and lifestyle? If so, it may signify that you are dealing with a mental health disorder that needs medical treatment.
You are Struggling With Drug or Alcohol Usage
Sometimes, people use drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism to alleviate mental health disorder symptoms. If you begin to use drugs or alcohol to an unhealthy degree or are using them specifically to avoid dealing with your mental health, it’s time to see a psychiatrist instead.
You Start Having Suicidal Thoughts
Suicidal thoughts should always be taken seriously. The best way to do that is to seek professional help to ensure you receive the treatment and support you need.
Seek Support at South Tampa Psychiatry
South Tampa Psychiatry understands how complicated mental health treatment can be. Furthermore, we know mental health struggles can feel overwhelming. Our expert support is here to make things easy for you by helping you understand what your options are. Then, we can help you determine what we can do to help. Contact us today at 866.273.5017 and let us get you back to living the life you deserve.