General Psychiatry and Therapeutic Services
If you are prescribed a medication, be sure that you:
- Tell the doctor about all medications and vitamin supplements you take
- Discuss any allergies and adverse reactions you've had with prior medications
- Understand how to take the medicine before you start and take as instructed
- Don't take medicines prescribed for another person
- Call your doctor right away if you have any problems with your medication
- Report serious side effects to the FDA MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting
Psychopharmacology (Medication Management)
Mental health disorders are common in the United States. Psychopharmacology is the use of medication to manage the symptoms of mental health disorders. For many people medications play a critical role in managing their mental health needs. The management of psychoactive medications along with regular therapy is the cornerstone of psychiatric care.
Psychiatric medications influence the chemicals that regulate emotions and thought patterns. In some cases, medications can reduce symptoms so other methods of treatment can be more effective. For example, a medication can ease symptoms of depression such as loss of energy and lack of concentration, allowing individuals to engage more in talk therapy with a trained therapist.
Predicting who will respond to what medication can be difficult because different medications may work better for one person than for another. Your provider will thoroughly review your history and clinical records to see if evidence exists for recommending one medication over another. A few psychiatric medications work quickly, and you will see improvements within days, but most work more slowly. You may need to take a medication for several weeks or months before you see improvement. Medication management may involve routine blood draws and monitoring of blood levels of various medications. Your provider will let you know if these tests are necessary.
Combining therapy with properly prescribed medications can reduce symptoms in those actively involved in mental health treatment by an average of nearly 70%. While counseling alone can be helpful for many issues, there are times when an appropriate medication can provide additional relief. Our providers have extensive experience in medication management and can actively collaborate with your therapist to help you develop a plan tailored specifically for you.
Psychotherapy can help you:
- Understand your illness
- Define and reach wellness goals
- Overcome fears or insecurities
- Cope with stress
- Make sense of traumatic experiences
- Separate your true personality from the mood swings caused by your illness
- Identify triggers that worsen symptoms
- Improve relationships
- Establish a stable, dependable routine
- Develop a plan for coping with crises
- Understand why things bother you and what you can do about them
- End destructive habits
Psychotherapy, also known as “talk therapy” or counseling, is when a person speaks with a trained therapist in a safe and confidential environment to explore and understand feelings and behaviors and gain coping skills. During individual therapy sessions, the conversation can touch on a variety of topics such as past or current problems, experiences, thoughts, feelings or relationships experienced by the person(s). The therapist will help make connections and provide insight into destructive patterns of behavior and start to work to change those patterns. The goal of therapy is to improve quality of life, establish and improve positive coping skills, and promote recovery.
Therapy can be an important part of treatment for depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, and many other psychiatric disorders. A good therapist will help you cope with feelings and symptoms, and change behavior patterns that may contribute to your illness. Talk therapy is not just talking about your problems. The goal is to work toward solutions. Therapy will typically involve homework, such as tracking your moods, writing about your thoughts/journaling, participating in social activities that have caused anxiety in the past, or trying to look at things in a different way.
Studies have found individual therapy to be effective at improving symptoms in a wide array of mental illnesses, making it a popular and versatile treatment.