As many psychiatric conditions have an underlying genetic and biological basis, medication can be a crucial component of treatment. Medications are often used as adjuncts to or in lieu of psychotherapy. In fact, research shows that the gold standard of treatment for depression, anxiety and many other psychiatric conditions is combined psychotherapy with medication.
During an evaluation, our psychiatrists utilize a bio-psycho-social model to treatment and identifies biological, genetic, psychological, and social factors that may be contributing to a patient’s condition. This often involves the use of laboratory testing, genetic testing, and psychological testing.
Our practice places a strong emphasis on psychotherapy as the foundation of treatment, but if medication is indicated, the psychiatrist will discuss with you the nature of your illness, the reason for the medication and the likelihood of improving with and without medication. She will also explain alternative treatments to medication, which have not been tried and provide an explanation why they should not be tried first. Further, the psychiatrist will explain the type of medication being recommended, probable side effects known to occur, and any possible long term side effects. Once the decision to start medication is made, the psychiatrist will monitor closely to determine how well the medication is working and whether it will need to be adjusted or even changed. If the patient is not responding to the medication she may utilize genetic testing to determine whether certain characteristic genetic differences are contributing the lack of response and use this information to change the medications accordingly.
Our psychiatrists take a conservative approach to treatment with medication and aims to use the minimum amount of medication to achieve a desired effect. It has been observed that many people being treated for a variety of psychiatric conditions are overmedicated and often with complex medication combinations that are not evidence based. Our psychiatrists will carefully evaluate and discuss your current treatment regimen with you as it compares to true evidence based practice guidelines and can often create a treatment plan that minimizes medication use.
At Harbor Psychiatry & Mental Health we are committed to collaborative therapeutic support. Our highly trained and experienced team includes clinicians from a variety of clinical and cultural backgrounds that are extremely dedicated to helping patients achieve their goals in relationships, careers, and personal growth. Therapy sessions are designed to assist individuals struggling with depression, anxiety, ADHD, marital and family discord, addiction, stress management, posttraumatic stress disorder PTSD/ past trauma, eating disorders, Asperger’s and Autism Spectrum Disorders, Bipolar Disorder, obsessive-compulsive stress disorder (OCD ) and anger management.
Our group of psychologists are specialized and trained in multiple treatment modalities including short term solution focused therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, family therapy, psychodynamic/psychoanalytic therapy, crisis intervention, dialectical behavior therapy, and trauma focused therapy. Individual therapy sessions can be structured or open-ended and are customized to an individual’s particular needs. In a structured session the therapy is focused on a particular problem area and one will be guided with skills and exercises to achieve a clear treatment goal. An open-ended session allows for patients to explore multiple issues in a way to facilitate awareness and personal growth. Individual sessions aim to provide guidance, foster insight, and help enhance and maintain physical and mental health.
What is the GeneSight® test?
Treating mental health disorders can often be a long, frustrating process for the millions of people that have spent months trying multiple medications at different doses to find the medication that works for you. During this time you could end up missing work, paying for multiple doctor visits, or losing hope that you’ll ever find a medication that can help you. Often frustration and despair mounts with every medication change that doesn’t work or cause side effects..
The GeneSight® test analyzes your DNA and providers a better understanding of what medication might work best based on your genetic makeup. Using the GeneSight® test report, your provider can personalize your treatment plan, finding the right medication faster and avoiding medicines that may cause side effects.
Learn More at GeneSight’s website
A neuropsychological/psychological evaluation involves a comprehensive battery of standardized paper-and-pencil and or computer tests that assess attention, concentration, memory, language, reasoning, and learning strengths and weaknesses. The tests also include measures of intellectual functioning and personality as well as instruments to assess mood, behavior and stress levels. The test provides a thorough cognitive and psychological profile that includes objective information about the patient’s functioning in terms of specific issues that may benefit from intervention.
Neuropsychological testing provides a more objective measure of a patient’s cognitive, behavioral and emotional functioning and can be a valuable tool in the evaluation of many conditions including:
With telepsych services you can now see your psychiatrist or therapist from home. Telepsychiatry allows patients to see their doctor from home by using real-time online video conferencing technology. A telepsych visit can be scheduled by calling our office at 949-887-7187. On the day of your appointment you will need to log on to https://app.evisit.com/ng/#/login/harbor-psych to be connected directly to Harbor Psychiatry telepsych online video conferencing website.