What is a Psychiatric Assessment?

Psychiatric Assessment

A psychiatric assessment is often one of the first steps to entering treatment for a mental illness or addiction. Assessments can also be done without treatment following, but it’s usually recommended to follow through with treatment afterwards so that you can ensure you receive the care that you need. Psychiatric assessments give healthcare professionals the information they need to diagnose you with a disorder, which can then be used moving forward for treatment. Examples of diagnoses derived from psychiatric assessments include major depressive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and more.

Psychiatric assessments involve a variety of components, as the psychiatrist will ask you questions and learn more about you relating to your symptoms and triggers, your treatment history, substance abuse history, family history, developmental and social history, sexual history, medical history, and based on their perceptions of your current mental status.

Oftentimes, severe mental illness accompanies substance abuse problems, making it crucial for you to receive a psychiatric assessment so that your healthcare team is fully aware of what conditions need to be treated. Previous studies have confirmed this common experience of comorbidity; for example, a 2014 study published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry sought to explore the prevalence of substance use among those with psychiatric illness versus the general population. Results from the study showed that those with psychiatric illness were much more likely to abuse substances, particularly tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and recreational drug use, than the general population.

When going through your psychiatric assessment, try to be as open and honest as possible. If you don’t remember something, state it; only share details that pertain to your lived experiences. This is the best way for you to receive an accurate diagnosis and, ultimately, the best treatment for your needs. Addiction and mental illness recovery is a lifelong journey but it well worth the hard work. If you haven’t already, speak with a professional from a reputable treatment center to learn more about getting enrolled in a treatment program. Your recovery is possible.

Simple Recovery is a world-renowned, California state-licensed substance abuse recovery center. We offer dual diagnosis treatment, so if you are experiencing both substance abuse and symptoms of a mental disorder, call us today at 888-743-0490so that we can work with you to restore your happiness, health, and well-being. You do not have to continue living this way; there are many people here ready to help you.