With the constantly changing pattern of the world around us in modern times, a majority of the population suffers from mental illnesses. Especially in this time of the pandemic, the world has witnessed an increase in the rate of cases of mental sufferings. However, there is nothing to be ashamed of if you are going through the same. The best way out of such a kind of situation is to visit a psychiatrist. There have been taboos and inhibitions regarding having mental issues but a psychiatrist can help you to cope with the various symptoms of mental illness that you are suffering from time to time. Here are the top 10 questions you need to ask your psychiatrist before visiting.

1. What is the experience of the psychiatrist?

The first question to ask when choosing a psychiatrist is his/her experience in treating various mental disorders. Mental illness is not confined to a particular domain; rather, it is widespread. While certain disorders  can get quite serious over time such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder; whereas there are few others such as panic attacks and anxiety that can be treated over time. The intensity of each mental illness not only varies in degree of intensity but also varies from one individual to the other. So, the experience of the psychiatrist in the ways of dealing with the severities of each disorder also counts, and it is undoubtedly one of the most vital questions to ask while choosing a psychiatrist. 

2. Is getting appointments tough?

The next question you need to ask your therapist is the difficulty in getting an appointment. However, even if it’s not tough to get an appointment, a prior appointment is always advisable. Moreover, when you wish to follow up, you should be able to get the appointment within a short time so that you need not wait for long when desperately looking forward to consulting your therapist. 

3. How to contact during an emergency?

One of the most essential questions you need to ask your psychiatrist is how to contact him/ her during the time of emergency. It should be kept in mind that mental illness can require immediate medical attention just like physical illness. Often you may experience a phase of dire crisis when you feel the urge to talk with your psychiatrist. So, the availability of a psychiatrist during an emergency is an important factor that needs to be considered.

4.What is my mental illness?

Though the psychiatrists are there to support you with the medications and therapy, it is immensely essential for the affected individual to have a clear idea about the mental illness that they are going through. This will help them to correctly evaluate and understand their conditions, symptoms which in turn, will help them to act accordingly. So asking about your mental illness is one of the most important questions you need to ask your psychiatrist.

5. What are the possible causes of mental illness?

Asking about the possible causes along with the information about your mental illness is equally important. Mental disorders are considered to be consequences of certain events that have happened in your life. A mental illness can stem from many possible reasons but the reasons themselves vary from one individual to the other. One needs to understand the causes that can trigger the symptoms of mental illness in them.

6. What is the diagnosis and how is it concluded?

The psychiatrist can diagnose your mental illness only after having clarity about your life and family history. It is claimed that mental illness is rooted in one’s history and a complete effective diagnosis can be done only after evaluating your life history. The diagnosis is often concluded by the psychiatrist by prescribing medications if medical attention is required. Often, the psychiatrist also suggests one to go for therapy and counseling sessions with a therapist.

7. What is the treatment plan?

One of the most essential questions you need to ask your therapist is his plan of treatment. This is important to know because in many cases, the treatment process becomes quite lengthy and incurs a lot of expenses. Not every individual has the capability to bear the expenses of the treatment. So, one should also get a fair idea of the expenses that might be involved in the treatment process. However, the treatment plan always does not involve a heavy dosage of medication but also accompanied by various therapies like psychotherapy, counseling sessions, meditation, and others as per requirements. 

8. What are the benefits and risks associated with it?

Every treatment plan has its own set of benefits and risks associated with it. So when you consult your therapist, it is essential to know how a treatment plan can eventually help you in the long run. In the case of medication, the question that you need to ask your therapist is about the long-term side effects that come with certain medicines. Often, the medicines help you to tackle the present situation but can lead to various physical issues that can be detrimental to your health in the future.

9. When to start treatment and what is the tenure?

After the diagnosis, one should ask when to start the treatment process as in certain cases, the mental illness demands immediate attention. Along with that, it is also important to know for how long one should be under the treatment. In worse case scenarios, often one has to undergo the treatment for a lifetime. There have been cases as well where an effective treatment plan leads to a complete cure.

10. Do I require a follow-up visit?

After the end of the consulting session, you need to ask your psychiatrist whether you require a follow-up. A single seating with your therapist is never sufficient to cure your mental illness and a follow-up at regular intervals is necessary. However, the interval should be decided by the therapist himself and the patient needs to follow that.

Now, the readers have a clear picture of the 10 top questions that can help you to evaluate yourself before visiting a psychiatrist. Go for a consultation only after asking these questions as it helps you to choose the right psychiatrist for yourself. While looking forward to getting the best psychiatrist, Dr. Anil Yadav would certainly be a great choice. Dr. Anil Yadav is a renowned psychiatrist with years of experience and can help you to overcome your issues in the best possible manner. You can get his appointment even online. So do not bottle up your symptoms of mental illness and talk about them when you feel the need! Consult Dr. Anil Yadav for getting the most suitable solutions for your problems. 

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