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A psychiatry consultation involves a conversation between you and a psychiatrist to find out what might be wrong and to come up with a management or treatment plan to help with the problem.
Psychiatry is a medical field that deals with the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental health conditions. A doctor who specializes in psychiatry is called a psychiatrist. There are several reasons why someone chooses to have or is referred by their GP to see and consult a psychiatrist. These include:
Worry, fear, and anxiety
Problems adjusting after experiencing stress or major life changes
Bad/low mood that does not go away
Thoughts of hurting other people
Hurting themselves on purpose
Being unable to sleep, relax, or wind down
Having too much energy
Constant negative thinking
Feeling jumpy or on edge
Feeling like people want to harm you or after you
Delusions (fixed beliefs with no basis in reality)
Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not actually there)
Disjointed, rushing thoughts
Hyperactivity, poor concentration and attention
Agitation, violence, or emotional outbursts
Out of control drug or alcohol use
Problem gaming, gambling, or other addictive behaviors
Insomnia or other sleep problems
Problems around body image, dieting or eating
Conditions that begins in childhood, such as childhood anxiety, intellectual disability, and autism.
Mental health conditions that may be diagnosed and treated in psychiatry consultations are as follows:
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Depression and bipolar disorder
Paranoia and schizophrenia
Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease
Sleep disorders, such as insomnia
Eating disorders, such as bulimia and anorexia
Addictions, such as alcohol and drug misuse.
Psychiatry consultation is usually needed for people with long-term, terminal, or painful physical health conditions to provide psychological support as well.
During your first psychiatry consultation, your psychiatrist will do an initial assessment. The first consultation is usually the longest as it should give your psychiatrist time to listen to you and hear your whole story.
Be prepared to answer lots of questions. Your psychiatrist will ask you about the problem that brought you to see them and general questions about your life and thoughts. It might be hard to answer open-ended questions, but remember that there is no wrong way to answer the questions and your psychiatrist will guide you through the interview. To get the most out of your psychiatry consultation, you should come prepared so you can be specific. If you feel comfortable, you can also share the goals you would like to achieve from the treatment. All the information you give can help your psychiatrist develop an individualized treatment plan.
You will also be asked about your medical and psychiatric history, both personal and family. Therefore, make sure that you prepare the following:
A list of medications you are taking
A list of any and all psychiatric medications you may have tried in the past and how long you took them for
Your medical concerns and any diagnoses
Family history about a psychiatric problem, if there are any.
Your psychiatrist may also want to speak with members of your family and speak with other health professionals.
Next, your psychiatrist may take your blood pressure and do a basic physical checkup, including taking your temperature and weight. In some cases, other testing or scans may be ordered.
Based on the information your psychiatrist gathered and the test results, they will make a full diagnosis. Then, the next step is to create a treatment plan. A treatment plan consists of a combination of therapies that suit your needs, personal preferences, age, and family situation. Your psychiatrist may prescribe medication or suggest other treatments, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) or counseling.
Your psychiatrist may continue to manage your treatment or you may be referred to see other health professionals, such as a psychologist.
Your next psychiatry consultation will typically be shorter than the first. In general, you will discuss how the medicines or treatments are working, and give a concise overview of how you are doing. Your psychiatrist or other healthcare professional will decide whether your medications or treatment need to be adjusted or not.
You can leave the hospital or clinic as soon as your psychiatry consultation is finished. While your length of stay will depend on your circumstances, you usually do not have to stay in Romania any longer than you want to.
No recovery time is needed after the psychiatry consultation itself. You should be allowed to go back to your normal activities, including work and exercise, immediately after your treatment. Note that it is normal to feel emotionally drained or overwhelmed after a psychiatry consultation. Therefore, it is okay to rest after your consultation and return to your daily activities when you feel ready.
Your recovery will start after treatment, which will depend on your specific condition and the type of treatment you undergo.
If your psychiatrist prescribes medications, make sure to take it as directed. You will probably need to see your psychiatrist regularly if your psychiatrist is providing you with psychological treatments. In addition, you may be suggested to go back to your GP for a regular checkup. They may also refer you to see a psychologist, social worker, or other therapists.
In most cases, you may need to attend more than one psychiatrist consultation. However, if your GP refers you to attend a psychiatry consultation only for a management plan or second opinion, you may not need to go back for another consultation.
Psychiatry consultation is the first step of treatment for mental health conditions. Consultations have high success rates in diagnosing your condition and finding out the reason for your problems. There is typically no risks involved in psychiatric consultations. Discussing your past, problems, family history, and treatment goals can bring up sensitive issues that may cause you to feel a lot of emotions.
You may be able to see other mental health professionals, such as a clinical psychologist, mental health counselor, clinical social worker, or other therapists. They usually provide therapy. However, they cannot prescribe medication.
Before psychiatry consultation, you may experience symptoms that can interfere with your ability to function in work, school, or social environment, but you do not know the reason or the condition that you have. After the consultation, your psychiatrist should be able to make a diagnosis and help you with creating a treatment plan.
Whilst the information presented here has been accurately sourced and verified by a medical professional for its accuracy, it is still advised to consult with your doctor before pursuing a medical treatment at one of the listed medical providers. This content was last updated on 27/02/2023.