If this is your first time looking for professional mental health support, there are numerous factors to consider. The mental health field can be confusing whether it's your first or fourth time in search of help. In fact, just trying to navigate the field without a little assistance can add even more pressure and uncertainty.
Whether you suffer from depression or are living with manic bipolar, it’s important to develop a clear picture of the mental health system. No matter if you’re looking for individual counseling or mental health group therapy activities, here are a few tips to consider:
1. Your Situation
There are a variety of mental health providers available to you. Many of these professionals will treat a broad range of diagnoses and disorders. Certain professionals will specialize in one particular area.
For example, you wouldn’t see a marriage counselor when dealing with an eating disorder. Nor would you see someone who specializes in helping people with eating disorders when you are managing manic bipolar.
The rule of thumb when seeking out mental health professionals is this: the more complex your problem, symptoms and diagnosis is, the more expertise you’ll require from your mental health provider.
2. Counseling, Medication or Both
Certain mental health conditions require counseling. Others need medication. Some need both. You may choose a mental health provider based on his or her ability to provide drugs or not.
Your choice should be dependent on the severity of your symptoms and how concerning your mental health has become. Individuals are required to see a psychiatrist, nurse practitioner and possibly your general practitioner for medications. Others see a psychologist for counseling when prescriptions drugs aren't indicated. Some see both kinds of mental health providers simultaneously.
3. Insurance is Important
Don’t forget to pay attention to your insurance. Mental health providers are not free, so you’ll be paying for these services. Look through your insurance policy and find out which mental health providers are covered. Most insurance companies only cover certain types of treatments from a select group of mental health providers.
Types of Mental Health Providers
There are a number of different types of mental health providers. All of these individuals are professionals who have been trained to diagnose mental health problems. They also provide treatment. Most of these people have a master’s degree or higher. To stay ahead, many regularly engage in advanced training and education through seminars, classes and more.
Here are a few of the common types of mental health providers:
- Psychiatric mental health nurse
- Licensed professional counselor
- Licensed clinical social worker
- Peer support specialist
Don’t Wait Any Longer!
If you know that seeking mental health support is what you need to do, don’t wait until disaster strikes. Waiting too long often lends to negative results – as you can see in this video.
Instead, get the help you need immediately. As any mental health speaker will tell you, people who wait the longest to get help always seem to struggle longer once they realize they need help. Don’t let that be you. Whether you’re living with manic bipolar, depression or another mental illness, take the steps you must to get healthy today!