If you, a loved one or friend, or your PCP suspect you have a mental health condition, such as anxiety or alcohol abuse disorder, you should get a psychiatric evaluation. This conversational interview with limited medical testing will help your provider determine a diagnosis and treatment plan.
Let’s talk about what to expect at this appointment and where you can go for comprehensive mental healthcare in Richmond, VA.
It Will Happen In-office and Takes About an Hour
The duration of this face-to-face interview will vary from patient to patient; however, initial psych evaluations generally take 60 to 90 minutes. Your doctor will review your symptoms and medical/psychiatric history carefully.
You’ll Be Asked a Series of Questions and May Complete a Series of Directed Tasks
Questionnaires and testing help the doctor understand the reasons for your visit and concerns/symptoms. The doctor will focus on:
- Family history of mental illness and suicide
- Past abuse or trauma
- Whether you have panic attacks, hallucinations, sleep problems, outbursts of anger, and other severe symptoms
- Your sleep habits
- Any substance or alcohol abuse
- Past diagnoses of mental health, addiction, or substance abuse
- Thoughts of self-harm, suicide, or harming others (aggressive behaviors or outbursts of anger)
The American Psychiatric Association Has Developed Guidelines
Mental health professionals follow the guidelines recommended by the APA so that the information gathered is as objective and complete as possible. For your part, ensure, to be honest and open with your provider. Withholding information or lying only hampers the diagnostic process, formulation of a viable treatment plan, and ultimately, symptom management, function, and recovery.
Also, you may feel anxious because of the nature of this assessment. However, please remember that your psychiatrist is a professional who has your best interests in mind. The interview will be conversational, non-judgmental, and a very important initial step in managing your symptoms.
Expect a Diagnosis and Treatment Plan
Most mental health diagnoses respond best to a combination of treatment modalities, such as talk therapy, medications, and more. As time progresses, you will visit your psychiatrist or counselor regularly, and your treatment plan will be adjusted depending on how you respond to prescribed interventions. Your input is vital, so be specific about how you think your symptoms are resolving.
Psychiatric Evaluations in Richmond, VA
At EPIC Health Partners, our providers deliver compassionate, evidence-based mental health care to people of all ages and walks of life. We wish to help you meet life’s challenges head-on and to improve your self-confidence and sense of well-being.
To arrange an initial psych evaluation, call us today at (434) 833-4601 or request an appointment online. We also offer telehealth psychiatry visits.
Lastly, if you have thoughts of or a plan for self-harm, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 873-8255 or text 741-741. Call 911 for emergency medical services nearest you.