Two professions which commonly overlapare psychiatry and psychology, often being combined in order to helppeople deal with some of the health problems they might be facing.Together, the two disciplines can prevent, diagnose and treatcountless forms of medical conditions, especially if these arerelated to the mental well-being of a person.
Nevertheless, psychology and psychiatryare two different disciplines and, furthermore, these two are not theonly ones you can turn to for help when experiencing mental healthproblems. So, read the lines below and learn more about psychiatricillnesses and the ways through which people who suffer from them canfind help and relief.
What are Psychiatric Illnesses?
A psychiatric illness can vary insymptoms, ranging from mild to severely debilitating. Therefore,depending on the problems you might be facing, your psychiatrictherapy may result in a fast and effective decrease and,subsequently, removal of the symptoms of your condition or requiremore time and effort in order for progress and recovery to takeplace.
First of all, at any signs of theseillnesses, people are advised to seek medical assistance. Once theydo, their doctors will search for the presence of the symptoms. Ifthese are found, he/she will ask the patient about the time of theonset of the symptoms, the intensity and frequency of them and manyother characteristics of the condition the patient is suffering from.Depending on the information he/she gathers, the doctor will thendiagnose the condition and send the patient to a qualified mentalhealth professional who will determine the best possible therapy forhim/her.
The patient can be treated by either apsychologist or a psychiatrist. Both of these experts can help thepatient, providing different approaches to the mental healthproblems. For example, while psychiatrists may use medicationscombined with psychotherapy, psychologists may concentrate solely onthe therapy and counseling part of the treatment. Moreover, often,the two experts will work together, helping the patient even morethis way.
Either way, these two professions areusually in charge of helping people who suffer from many forms ofbehavioral, affective, cognitive or perceptual abnormalities. Apsychiatrist may use various methods to find the exact psychiatricillness his/her patient is suffering from, using the diagnosticmanuals such as the International Classification of Diseases or theDiagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Also, he/shemight use neuroimaging or some neurophysiological techniques for theprocess of diagnosis and treatment.
How Can Psychiatric Therapy Help?
Approaches for dealing with mentalhealth problems have changed during the last decades and are bound tocontinue to evolve and improve. Therefore, today, patients of thistype can be treated through various methods. In the past, any mentalillness required inpatient care lasting for at least six months.However, today, patients who are treated inside a mental healthfacility are often considered to be similar to outpatients, spendingonly the least amount of time hospitalized. So, inpatients arecommonly held in a mental health facility for about two weeks, notlonger, unless the conditions prevent this, requiring longertreatment of this type.
There are psychiatric patients who arenot voluntarily brought to an institution of this type. Theconditions under which this might happen vary from one state toanother. Nevertheless, in order for a person to be involuntarilyadmitted into a psychiatric institution, he/she needs to be provendangerous both for his/her own safety and the safety of other peoplewho spend time near him/her.
The patients who are hospitalized canbe secured so that they do not harm anybody or open and thefacilities they undergo treatment in may be mixed or separated interms of sexes of the people inside.
However, this form of psychiatrictreatment is considered to be less and less popular these days, withthe growth of community care, which does its best to offer adifferent approach. Also, lack of funding and resources necessary forcreating fully-functional and adequate mental health treatmentfacilities has resulted in a massive reduction of the number ofpsychiatric beds.
On the other hand, the patient may needto undergo outpatient treatment, where he/she needs to pay hisclinician a 30 minute visit from time to time, where his/her progresswill be assessed and his/her therapy changed if necessary. Again,funding and lack of health insurance is preventing psychiatrists fromspending more time on the counseling-based part of treatment. Rather,more and more experts of this type focus solely on prescribingmedications and conducting psychiatric therapies this way.
All in all, there are two major typesof psychiatric treatments, being carried out inside a mental carefacility or through visits the patient pay to his/her psychiatrist ata scheduled time. The treatment itself varies, depending on thediagnosed condition and the reactions of the patient to the therapy.Yet, the improvements in this medical branch have resulted in moreeffective treatments and approaches that those which were used in thepast.