How you know if you need to see a Psychiatrist

If you’ve been diagnosed with a condition that will require psychiatric medicine, you will be sent to see a psychiatrist for evaluation and medication. Bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, severe cases of depression or any other condition that would benefit from psychiatric medication will see a psychiatrist who is licensed to prescribe medication.

Psychiatrists are medical doctors who specialize in mental health illnesses and disorders. They may also provide psychotherapy, however, they are moving more toward medication management and leaving the psychotherapy to psychologists. Psychiatrists who work in clinics or hospitals still see severe cases but in private practice, psychotherapy is becoming a thing of the past.

Psychologists are not medical doctors and are not licensed to prescribe medicines except in two states, New Mexico and Louisiana; and that is only after consulting with a psychiatrist.

Psychologists make the decision to send their patients to a psychiatrist when evaluation and medication are appropriate. School psychologists and social workers may also need a diagnosis from a psychiatrist before they can intervene to help children in their educational needs.

It appears that Insurance is involved in the changes in psychotherapy moving toward psychology. It comes down to cost effectiveness health management. It costs less to have a psychiatrist do the evaluation and the psychologists to provide the therapy. 2003 figures showed psychiatrists salary at $107.00 to $155.00 per hour. Psychotherapy could potentially last a long time.

Some mental disorders are results of biological activities in the brain. Chemical messengers, neurotransmitters, don’t fire properly or send clear signals to other parts of the body. Psychiatric medicine is needed, and management is crucial as well, but it seems that more is needed for the patient.

In this situation, where the problem is either biological or genetic in origin, psychotherapy might be of greater benefit from the psychiatrist instead of a psychologist.

It’s a question that I ponder, and I wonder if Insurance providers make any provisions for this type of biological distinction, or is health care insurance driven solely by economics?

When would you need to see a psychiatrist? Psychiatrists are managing medication more than providing psychotherapy these days. Psychiatrists treat some of the severe cases of mental illnesses, and unless you fall into that category, you would need to see him for only a short time for evaluation and possibly medication.