What Can A Psychiatrist Do For Me?
A Psychiatrist is a licensed medical physician who specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of mental illness. A Psychiatrist has completed medical school, in addition to at least four years of additonal specialty training in Psychiatry. Psychiatrists are not only trained to diagnose and manage mental illness using medical approaches, but are also adept at providing psychotherapy (Dr. Sidhu provides supportive therapy in conjunction with medications management). Certain specializations within Psychiatry require additional years of training and qualification. Within the profession, each Psychiatrist has specific areas of interest and specialization but has the skills to provide treatment from multiple approaches. By the end of your first visit, Dr. Sidhu will determine whether or not you will benefit from further evaluation or begin treatment. Sometimes, an additional visit may be necessary to complete the initial evaluation (for example, someone with an extensive psychiatric history or complicated presentation) as extra time may be necessary to get further information from you, speak to your family or loved ones, review past medical records, or order any necessary lab work. In that case, Dr. Sidhu will ask to schedule additional time (30-60 minutes) with you at a future date in order to complete your initial evaluation. Dr. Sidhu will not prescribe any medications or recommend any other treatment (such as TMS) till the evaluation is complete (to ensure accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment). Therefore, it is important that you have enough medication from your previous treating physician. This first visit is a consultation and is a chance to determine whether or not Dr. Sidhu's practice and services offered best fits your needs. If it turns out that you may benefit from treatment elsewhere, you will be referred to an appropriate treatment center.
What Will Happen During My First Appointment?
Dr. Sidhu will meet with you for an extensive interview and psychiatric evaluation in which she will gather information; such as your current symptoms, past psychiatric history, medical history and other relevant personal information. These questions may be personal and uncomfortable for some people. Please try to be as open as possible so that the most accurate information can be used in determining your diagnosis and treatment. Any previous medical/psychiatric records and lab results that may be helpful should be brought to the initial visit. Providing Dr. Sidhu with your previous psychiatrist's and other treating physicians' contact phone numbers will further help coordinate your care. Once you speak to an office staff member and an appointment is confirmed you may be able to download/print certain office forms from this website in the comfort of your home. It is highly recommended that you print and fill out these forms prior to your initial appointment so you and Dr. Sidhu can focus on your concerns and care when you arrive minimizing the amount of paperwork that needs to be completed. Please arrive 15-20 minutes earlier than your scheduled appointment time in order to complete any remaining paperwork.
Will My Treatment Be Kept Confidential?
Dr. Sidhu will not reveal any information regarding what happens within the work that is done together unless you have signed the Authorization to Disclose Information form. In the instance that you are in danger of harming yourself or another person, then she is obligated by law to notify the authorities of this.
Will The Cost Of My Treatment Be Covered By My Insurance Plan?
When you speak to our office staff we will call your Insurance to verify your benefits/eligibility. We will then let you know what your coverage is per your Insurance contract as well as what your copayment/coinsurance may be. Based on this you can decide if you would like to use your Insurance benefits or, if your Insurace does not cover your visits, you may like to see Dr. Sidhu on a fee-for-service basis. If you choose the fee-for-service option certain PPO Insurance plans may reimburse anywhere from 20-90% of the total cost of services. Dr. Sidhu will provide you with a 'Superbill' with necessary codes which you can submit to your PPO Insurance for reimbursement. Payments (whether Insurance copayments/coinsurance fees or fee-for-service fees) are due at the beginning of each session.
How Long Will My Treatment Last?
There are no precise determinations that can be made regarding the length of your treatment. Generally speaking, the longer you have had your mental illness not medically acknowledged, the longer the treatment will take. Certain conditions do not require a lot of time to treat, and others considerably more. Certain mental illnesses require just a couple of visits, and others require life long maintenance. We believe that you should seek treatment as soon as possible, for the best outcome.
How Can I Prevent The Mental Illness From Coming Back?
You will be given guidance and protocols to adhere to both inside and outside of our office. It is important that you follow the treatment regimen and plan of action that is prescribed. Make sure that you follow the medication regimen, attend the psychotherapy/counseling sessions, and keep your life as balanced as you can. It is also important to try and avoid stressful situations, let your loved ones help you whenever possible, and seek help the moment you feel like your mental illness is coming back or getting worse.
What Determines If My Mental Illness Will Come Back?
There are a few components that play a part in the recurrence of mental illness. These include:
Coexisting stresses in life: Often times, a mental illness will recur if there are additional life stressors (for example: family or marital problems, starting a new job, losing someone close to you).
Age: More often than not, if someone is diagnosed with a mental illness earlier than later in life, there is a higher likelihood of the illness recurring.
Diagnosis: Some mental illnesses are more common to recur than others. Some of the ones on the list that are more likely to come back are: OCD, drug and alcohol addiction, eating disorders, and bipolar disorder.
Family History: If a certain mental illness, like Schizophrenia, has been diagnosed in a close family member (a parent, for example) the chances of having the same illness increase. In some cases, such illnesses are considered chronic or long term and require ongoing management.
What If I Have An Emergency Or An Urgent Situation Comes Up?
Dr. Sidhu and our team do not provide any emergency medical services, provide after-office hour care, or do any hospital work. This is an office-based consulting service. If the occasion arises when urgent care or emergency services are needed please contact your nearest urgent care/emergency room or call 9-1-1 so you can receive care from the appropriate trained professionals.