What Is the Goal of Psychiatric Treatment?
Psychiatric care can help unlock the mysteries of the human brain. A psychiatrist can help to navigate through the muddy waters of mental illness by getting to the root of the chemical imbalances that might exist. By using a combination of medical diagnosis and talk therapy to figure out why a person may be suffering from these imbalances and the behavioral issues that manifest, a psychiatrist can implement a treatment plan to help get the illness under control.
The goals of psychiatric care
People who manifest signs of mental illness may be reticent to seek treatment. Stigmas related to these disorders may make it difficult for some to ask for help. When they do finally decide to try and change things, the effect the untreated disease may have on their life may be severe. People who go too long with an undiagnosed and untreated mental illness may exhibit behaviors such as these:
- Unexplained risk-taking
- Suicidal ideation
Recognizing there is a need for intervention is the first step towards getting on the path to improving the quality of life. In addition to addressing these symptoms that indicate the possible need for psychiatric treatment, here are some of the more notable goals of psychiatric treatment. Keep in mind, each treatment plan is personalized according to the patient’s unique needs and diagnosis.
Restore the patient’s mental health
Of course, the primary goal of psychiatric care is to restore the patient’s mental health. This means minimizing (or eliminating) their symptoms. Symptoms vary based on the specific mental health concern they are addressing. As discussed, this often includes confronting feelings of apathy and sadness, although every patient has a unique set of symptoms.
Improve the patient’s ability to function
Not only does poor mental health affect the patient’s level of happiness and overall well-being, but it also impairs their ability to function optimally as well. This often leads to poor performance in school and at work, trouble with relationships, and in other walks of life. One of the goals of psychiatric care is to help the patient find better ways to cope and remain productive.
Find coping mechanisms that outlast psychiatric treatment
Psychiatric treatment may last for six months or more depending on the patient’s needs, but it is not intended to be a permanent solution to mental health disorders. Although many continue with regular visits for an extended amount of time, one of the main goals is to help the patient find ways to cope and deal with their condition outside of therapy. This may involve implementing a healthier lifestyle and developing healthy and meaningful relationships.
Methods of treatment
Psychiatrists utilize a few different methods to get patients on the path toward a more stable and fulfilling life. Psychiatry is a specialty doctors can choose to practice after medical school, and as such, these doctors can meld together the biological science that is spurring the behavior as well as the environmental factors that may be reinforcing the negative behavior. Psychiatrists may use various means to treat the patient.
Since most mental disorders are born out of a chemical imbalance in the brain, the first line of treatment may be the use of prescription drugs to try and bring everything back into alignment. Some of the medications used may suppress some chemicals while others may try to increase the production of others. It may take a few attempts for a doctor to find the right fit for the patient.
Psychiatrists are often depicted with a notepad furiously scribbling notes while a patient lies prone on a couch. This may be an exaggeration, but it is a critical element in providing long-term solutions for the environmental aspects that may be key in meeting the goals of psychiatric treatment — the stabilization of a person's physiological system to allow them to live a healthy and productive life.
Another tool psychiatrists may recommend in a treatment plan is group therapy. These sessions often involve people with similar mental illnesses who all gather to discuss their emotional, physical, and social issues in an effort to provide each other with support and stability. It may help an ailing person to stop feeling isolated and alone.
The brain is a powerful organ. It is responsible for powering the entire body and houses emotional functions. When something is not quite right with behavior and emotions, a psychiatric consult may prove beneficial in getting things back on track.
Request an appointment here: https://albany.evolvepsychiatry.com or call Evolve Psychiatry at (518) 675-3097 for an appointment in our Albany office.
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