Psychiatric Check-up and Medication
Psychiatric check-up is important for checking your mental health status. Psychiatrists’ medical studies and years of clinical experience help them understand the complex relationship between living and other medical illnesses. They can assess all the medical and psychological data, make a diagnosis, and recommend treatment. Also, as doctors, they are the only mental health providers who can prescribe medication and order tests.
Chances are that they will prescribe a treatment. Because everyone is different, in that they react differently to drugs and other stimuli, the doctor is cautious. As a rule, after prescribing a treatment, you will receive a call from them after a period of about 2 weeks to check on the effects that the treatment has had on your condition. It is important to analyze if the symptoms have improved, how many of them and by how much. It is very important to check if any side effects have occurred.
If there are problems with any of the above, the doctor adjusts the medication. This means that you can change the amount of drugs you are given. The amount can increase or decrease, depending on the case. There are situations where the medication can be completely changed.
Afterwards, the doctor will periodically call you for psychiatric check-ups until the medication is optimally adjusted to eliminate your symptoms with minimal side-effects.
In the last phase, when the optimum medication was found with the help of a psychiatric check-up you will see your doctor regularly, every 1 to 3 months. You will do this for your prescription until treatment is no longer needed.
Keep in mind! The moment you start to feel unwell you should notify your doctor immediately and make an appointment for a consultation. There may be other changes in your body (e.g. a disease) that can react harmfully to your prescribed drugs.
Do not interrupt treatment without your doctor’s consent. Even if you feel well for a while, medication is necessary to regulate functions in the body for longer periods of time.
In some situations your psychiatrist needs more information to accurately determine your diagnosis. In such cases you will be referred for psychological assessment and testing. Then, on the basis of these data, he can form an appropriate opinion with the help of which he can start prescribing treatment.
Mental illnesses are not always easy to diagnose because some symptoms are present in more than one illness. We introduce here the term “comorbidity”.
We recommend psychiatric medication for
Depressive episodes, especially moderate and severe ones, with or without psychotic elements
✓ Anxiety disorders (generalized, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder)
✓ Bipolar affective disorder
✓ Schizoaffective disorder
✓ Behavioral disorders
The doctor will determine whether the patient requires hospitalization and will receive a referral to the „Al Obregia” Hospital if deemed necessary.
Once the diagnosis has been established, the doctor may recommend drug treatment by:
- A simple prescription
- A medical slip to the family doctor
- From May-June 2010, free and compensated prescriptions, directly from the surgery, if you have brought a referral note from your attending physician and proof of insurance.
You will need psychiatric check-ups taking up to 15-30 minutes every 1-2 weeks in the first month of treatment, and monthly thereafter.
What to remember about a psychiatric check-up
Psychiatric treatment does not take effect immediately. It will take up to 2 weeks for the effect to settle in.
You will get all the necessary information about side effects, mechanism of action of the pills, duration of treatment, etc.