Helpful information about Psychiatry

What is a Psychiatrist?

A psychiatrist is a fully trained medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illnesses including emotional and addiction issues. Psychiatrists are qualified to assess both the mental and physical aspects of psychological disturbance.

This background enables a psychiatrist to perform a full range of medical assessments which, combined with interviews and discussions with patients, families and other professionals, helps to provide a full picture of a patient's physical and mental state. Their clinical training and experience equip them to understand the complex relationship between medical and emotional issues and to evaluate the medical and psychological data, to make a full diagnosis thus enabling them to develop an effective treatment plan.

A common question is what is the difference between a Psychiatrist and a Psychologist? The short answer is, psychiatrists are medical doctors and psychologists are not. The suffix "-iatry" means "medical treatment," and "-logy" means "science" or "theory." So psychiatry is the medical treatment of the psyche, and psychology is the science of the psyche.

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Why see a Psychiatrist?

People seek psychiatric help for many reasons. The problems can be sudden, such as a panic attack, or frightening hallucinations, thoughts of suicide, or hearing "voices." Or they may be more long-term, such as feelings of sadness and hopelessness or anxious feelings that never seem to lift or eating disorders and addictions. Alternatively, they can help diagnose and manage long-term issues like bi-polar affective disorder, ADHD, Schizophrenia and Autistic Spectrum Disorders.

Another reason why a Psychiatrist maybe recommended is if there is a possible medical issue that is co-occurring or indeed creating the problem. The other main reason for seeing a Psychiatrist is if a medical prescription is required. Only Psychiatrists are able to administer medication as they are fully qualified medical doctors.

Moreover, sometimes a patient can present all the symptoms of depression, irritability, low mood, difficulty sleeping, and in fact they have a medical condition like anaemia or hypothyroidism. Both of these are very treatable. A psychiatrist, being medically qualified, is in a better position to take into account the physical side of our mental lives than any other mental health clinician. It is surprising how much psychotherapy some people have had when all they really needed was a blood test and their iron balance or thyroid hormones corrected.

Deciding on the right treatment approach for you

If you have never seen a professional about an emotional or mental health issue it can be confusing and you may not know which approach or treatment best suits your needs.

At Clinical Partners we have a highly experienced team of practitioners from a number of disciplines including Counselling and Psychotherapy, Psychiatry and Psychology. All of our team have professional qualifications (mostly Master's degrees) and extensive experience in their field.

Depending on your individual issues our trained admissions counsellor will be able to recommend the most appropriate specialist or team of specialists for you. So it may be appropriate to see a Psychologist or a Psychotherapist or if there are possible medical issues we would advise you had an initial assessment with a Psychiatrist who has a medical as well as psychiatric background.

This means you get the right help, at the right time, from someone who's not only an expert in their field, but also from an expert with the most appropriate approach for your situation.

How Can We Help?

Whatever your circumstance we will be able to help you in total confidence. By calling our Admissions Counsellor on 0203 326 9160 you will be able to talk in confidence about your situation and we can recommend a specialist to assist you.

We will then arrange an initial consultation at a time that suits you and create a treatment plan with you. It may be that different disciplines such as psychology or psychotherapy are required and we can also organise this for you. If subsequent appointments are required we can arrange convenient times with you at either of our two clinics in West London.

It's about getting better. Better treatment. Better support. Better help. And better health.

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