Lighthouse Health Florida

Visiting a psychiatrist for the first time might be overwhelming for some people, mainly, because sometimes you don’t know what to expect, what is going to happen and hot to go about it. The unknown might prevent you from getting the help you need.

It is commonly believed that mental illnesses are different from the physical ones. This article will help you understand better what really entails visiting a psychiatrist.

To begin with, you would be surprised to find out that the visit is similar to any medical consultation that you might have experienced. The professional should remind you that what you discuss in the session is confidential (unless what you discussed is dangerous to themselves or someone else.)

Generally, the first visit is just a consultation where you and the psychiatrist get to know each other. You might discuss what brought you to visit the professional and you will continue working together from that point. Then, a series of questions might be asked you to help the psychiatrist get some information about your mental health, general health, and your family history.

When a patient goes to a clinic with a psychiatric/mental health concern, it is important to identify the medical causes. Depression, mania, anxiety and thought disorders might be caused by and may mimic medical problems such as thyroid disease, infections, medication side effects, hormone abnormalities and many other treatable medical conditions.

How to Plan  a Treatment

When a patient suffers from depression, there are several treatments that can be applied. Each patient is different, unique and she or he attends with a history of treatment failures, treatment successes and treatment options which were not solved in the past.

The professional also has to rule out conditions like bipolar disorder, ADHD, anxiety, psychosis, and addiction, as these conditions influence which medications would be suitable for the patient. A proper diagnosis is necessary to plan effective treatment.

The treatment might be based on the severity of the patient’s symptoms, how much the depression impacts their ability to function at work and/or home and their history of previous treatments.


Psychotherapy is one the most common initial treatment tool that is employed with my patients who suffer from depression. The type of therapy implemented should be specific to what the patient discussed during the session and subsequent follow-up visits. At the same time, it should be based on the type and intensity of therapy on the patient’s stressors, symptoms, and preference for the frequency of upcoming visits.

It may be quite enriching for patients to receive supportive therapy. At each appointment, the professional should provide an empathic environment in which any number of concerns and stressors in a supportive, non-judgmental and non-critical atmosphere can be discussed.

There are other types of psychotherapy including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), psychodynamic psychotherapy, interpersonal psychotherapy, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT). As well as intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) for those who are most negatively impacted by depression and whose functioning is the most severely impaired.

Close Attention to Behavioral Changes

Sometimes depression is associated with behavioral changes, that is why it tends to lead to social isolation and a decreased interest in things like nutrition, exercise and enjoyable activities. Therefore, your psychiatrist will encourage you to take an inventory of your current behaviors. You will have to pay attention to your diet, physical exercise, recreational activities, chores, bill paying and your hygiene.

After evaluation these areas, you might find that you have significant deficits in comparison to your pre-depression behavior this is due to depression keeping you from having the motivation to do what makes you feel better.

When in treatment, you will realize that the plan elevated will motivate you. Small victories and accomplishments are important to lift your mood when depression has caused so much pain and struggle.


Some patients just look for “a pill” to make them feel better, and some others argue they do not believe in medication. However, every decision should be based on information about the risks, benefits, and alternatives to every treatment option. The professional might work with you to help you decide what is best. At last, you will have the final word on whether you will have the medication or not.

Symptoms serve to target for the right treatment and align better with some medications. Targeting the most severe and urgent ones is a must to help you get better and assert the correct medication.

Today, it is possible to find a lot of proved medication that can benefit the patient in the depression treatment. When assessing the correct one, the psychiatrist must consider your history of medication successes and failures.

What is more, some patients need a combination of medication to suit their personal and current necessities. At each visit, the professional should evaluate if a medical adjustment should be made if the dose should be changed or some other medication should be added to achieve optimal outcomes.

Other Complementary Treatment

Medication for depression might take some time to take effect, around a week or two, and it might take up to 6-8 weeks more to get a maximal effect. Thus, you should consider doing other treatment options simultaneously until the medication starts working. This modality may have a significant positive impact on your depression immediately.


Psychiatry is a part of medicine which focuses on mental diseases including depression. If you suffer from depression or you know somebody who does, you need to know that a single consultation can help you clarify the diagnosis, treatment options and so that you can begin with your healing process. Besides, your symptoms, feelings, and struggles are going to be understood and treated by the psychiatrist you choose.

If you need more information or assessment in connection to this or any other mental problem or psychotherapy contact us. We are more than willing to help you get the right treatment for you.

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