Published On: Tue, Aug 27th, 2019

What to Know Before Visiting a Psychiatrist

Mental health is an important topic in today’s world, and more people than ever are seeking out therapy from counselors, psychiatrists, and the like. If you have never paid special attention to your mental health but would like to, it may help you to know what to expect from visiting a psychiatrist.

Visiting a Psychiatrist

Understanding the Differences

Before you can truly know what to expect during your first appointment, you must understand the differences between psychiatrists, psychologists, and therapists. A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who often prescribes medication for serious mental health issues, but doesn’t always offer hour-long counseling sessions. On the other hand, psychologists and therapists are mental health experts who provide therapy sessions. They cannot prescribe medication, though, which means you’ll need a psychiatrist if you need antidepressants, anti-anxiety medication, or the like.

Communicating With Your Psychiatrist

Even though psychiatrists don’t always provide therapy sessions, it is still important that you’re able to speak freely with him or her. You should feel respected and heard from the very first phone call, as this further indicates whether you’ll feel comfortable speaking in person. Ensure he or she listens to you without judgment and keeps your information confidential.

Learning About Prescription Refills

Knowing how a psychiatrist such as Jack Wu MD prescribes medication is also important. If you live far from your psychiatrist, you’ll especially want to know how many refills you can receive at once and how often you need to come in for evaluation. Sometimes, a psychiatrist will only require a 24-hour notice if you need a refill, but others take several days. Plan this in advance t ensure you don’t go without your medications.

Remember, your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Research has even proven that a poor mental state can cause poor physical health. If you suspect you may be suffering from anxiety, depression, or another mental health disorder, seeking help can give you a better quality of life.