Seeing a Psychiatrist for the First Time? Here’s What You Can Expect.
When you schedule an appointment to see me or one of the other psychiatric care providers in our Winston-Salem or Raleigh offices, I hope you take a moment to review this post. I want your experience with Certus Psychiatry & Integrated Care to be a transformative one that helps you realize better mental health.
Before I go any further, I want to applaud you for taking control of your mental health! I constantly see people who have needlessly been battling a mental health disorder for months, years, and even decades whose symptoms could have been alleviated or cured by visiting a mental health care provider. By taking the first step in seeking help, know that you are not alone, and we’re here to help you be well!
What Happens at Your First Office Visit
Once you complete all necessary paperwork, you will meet with the care provider assigned to your case or me. This first meeting usually takes about an hour. In this meeting, we work to get to know you as a person to better understand and diagnose what issues you may be dealing with.
- Listen to you talk about your concerns and symptoms.
- Ask questions about your general health as well as talk about subject that may seem very personal or sensitive, but every answer helps us get to the core of what be causing the symptoms of what you are feeling and why.
- Ask about your family history to see if there are any genetic links we can make.
We need to hear your whole story, and there is nothing you can say that will surprise us. The more open and honest you are with us, the better we can diagnose and treat you.
Getting a Diagnosis and Treatment Plan
This first meeting is the first step in our journey together in helping come to a complete diagnosis and treatment plan. It may take more than one appointment to get to a diagnosis, as there may be multiple factors at play that need to be fully understood so that you can begin your path to recovery with the right treatment plan.
A treatment plan combines therapies that suit your health needs, personal preferences, family situation, and age.
Can I bring someone with me?
Please do! Having someone with you for support and to hear things you may have missed is never a bad thing. I even have a patient who brings his dog to appointments because it makes him feel better. She’s a sweet dog, so all the better!
What is said in the office stays in the office!
Anything you talk about with me, your care provider, or any Certus Psychiatry employee is confidential. We may talk with other healthcare professionals you see to get a complete picture of your medical history if you permit us. We may also have to share your diagnosis and treatment plan with your health insurance provider, but they will not know the details of our discussions.
What happens next?
After your first visit, your appointments will be shorter as we work together in deciding if your treatment is working, or if it may need to alter it due to medication side effects, and/or if we need to add different treatments to your plan.
Keep in mind, mental health issues vary from person-to-person. What may help someone else with depression or anxiety, for example, may not work for you. And that’s okay.
You just have to Believe in WE! We will work together to find the right course of treatment that works for you.