Are you feeling nervous, restless, or tense? Do you think you have anxiety and want to seek help? Is your mind confused that what kind of doctor should you consult? If yes, then your search engine has brought you the best place. In this article, “What kind of doctor should I see for anxiety?” you’ll find all that you are seeking.
Anxiety is a group of mental disorders characterized by considerable feelings of nervousness, restlessness, and fear. A person may seem to worry about future events and this might hinder his/ her daily functioning.
It is important to seek help as soon as possible if a person shows symptoms of anxiety. The sooner the treatment begins, the better will be the outcome. So let’s begin!
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What kind of doctor should I see for anxiety?
Many people suffering from anxiety are confused and have this question in mind that “what kind of doctor should I see for anxiety?” Anxiety is a medical condition that various health professionals can treat. For anxiety, you need to see a mental health specialist such as a psychiatrist or a psychologist.
A psychiatrist is a medical doctor/ practitioner who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health disorders.
A psychologist, on the other hand, is a specialist in psychology. He/ she studies mind and behavior and specializes in the treatment of mental, emotional, and behavioral conditions.
However, a good place to start is your primary care provider. This is important to rule out any underlying medical condition that might be the cause of your anxiety. You need to get checked for signs of an underlying health condition that may require treatment.
What kind of doctor prescribes anxiety medication?
Although a psychiatrist and a psychologist can both diagnose anxiety and provide psychotherapy, only a psychiatrist can prescribe anxiety medications since he is a licensed medical practitioner.
Can you go to a regular doctor for anxiety?
Yes, you can go to a regular doctor for anxiety for an initial check-up only. Your regular doctor will conduct a complete psycho examination to determine if your anxiety is due to any medical condition.
Several medical conditions such as thyroid problems, diabetes, and hormone imbalances can cause anxiety symptoms. Some medications may have adverse side effects which might also be a cause of your anxiety.
The doctor will then give your medication or relevant treatment to treat your health condition. However, if your regular doctor rules out other conditions, you might be then referred to a mental health professional.
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Should I see a psychologist or psychiatrist for anxiety?
A psychologist and a psychiatrist, both can help you with anxiety. It depends on the cause and the symptoms you might be experiencing. Although their methods might be slightly different, they both can successfully alleviate the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Psychologists specialize in the study of mind and behavior. They mainly focus on the assessment and treatment of mental, emotional, and behavioral disorders using psychotherapy. They may either have Psy.D [Doctor of Psychology] degree or have a Ph.D. degree [Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology].
If you want to spend time talking about an issue or disturbing thought in a one-on-one session, you may find what you need from a psychologist.
Psychiatrists, on the other hand, are licensed medical practitioners who after completing their medical education, have specialized in the field of psychiatry. They follow a more medical-based tradition look into biological aspects of psychiatric illness.
Psychiatrists use medications to help treat the symptoms. They may also use talk therapy and cognitive approaches for mental health problems.
In case you are suffering from any debilitating mental health symptoms that are interfering with your daily functioning, you might need a psychiatrist.
Both psychologists and psychiatrists use effective treatments. A person might be needing both as well. To find the right medication to alleviate anxiety symptoms, they can go to a psychiatrist. Then to reduce your loneliness and to talk through their issues, they might go to a psychologist.
Effective treatment of an anxiety disorder requires you completely trust the doctor and feel comfortable with them.
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When to see a psychiatrist for anxiety?
There are many signs a person might show that he/ she needs to see a psychiatrist. If someone is suffering from severe somatic or body disturbances, it means it’s time to see a psychiatrist.
When someone is reporting feelings such as increased heart rate and tremors, the person might be having a panic attack.
If someone is having a constant sense of impending danger or panic, a loss of appetite, insomnia or trouble sleeping, or loss of sex drive, he/she must get checked for anxiety.
The basic core functions of the human body are also disturbed, including eating, sleeping, and sex in anxiety disorder.
Some other signs such as feeling consistently anxious, or having difficulty daily functioning, or getting up from the bed each morning are also suggestive of anxiety.
If you’re suffering from any of the above, you need someone to help you find the cause and treat anxiety. At this time, you need to see a psychiatrist or otherwise, you’re probably going to struggle throughout your life.
What happens when you go to the doctor for anxiety?
If you start from a primary care provider, the doctor will do a complete check-up, investigation, and examinations. This is to rule out any medical causes that might be causing your anxiety such as diabetes, thyroid problems, heart diseases, etc.
You might be then referred to mental health provider if your doctor rules out any medical condition.
Once being referred to a mental health specialist, you will undergo a psychological evaluation to help diagnose an anxiety disorder.
A psychological evaluation involves discussing or communicating your thoughts and feelings to the specialist. This will help in diagnosis and also check for related complications such as depression.
The mental health specialist will then compare your symptoms to an internationally used criterion known as DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). It is a criterion published by the American Psychiatric Association, to compare the symptoms for the diagnosis of an anxiety disorder.
After diagnosis, you will be given the treatment for your anxiety. Psychotherapy and anxiolytics (anti-anxiety) medications are the two main treatments for anxiety.
Psychotherapy is psychological counseling. It is also known as talk therapy as it involves talking to a therapist. This will help reduce your stress and anxiety.
A form of psychotherapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), is an effective short-term treatment for anxiety disorder. It includes exposure to the trigger of your anxiety and helps you build confidence to manage the situation.
The medical practitioner might also prescribe anti-anxiety medications depending on the type of anxiety disorder you have. An anxiolytic called Buspirone or certain anti-depressants can be prescribed to relieve the symptoms of anxiety disorder.
In some circumstances, certain other types of medications, such as sedatives, also called benzodiazepines, or beta-blockers might also be used for short-term treatment.
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Who to talk to about anxiety and depression?
A doctor or mental health professional is the best option to talk to about your anxiety and depression. You can express your thoughts and feelings to your doctor or mental health provider.
They will help you find out the underlying cause for your symptoms and also prescribe the best treatment option for you.
Always remember you’re never alone in this. You can involve your family and friends and ask for their help and support. Nothing is better than a supportive family or supportive group of friends.
Other support groups can also help you in your struggle. They offer compassion, understanding, and support. They might help you with their shared experiences.
You can contact The National Alliance on Mental Illness and the Anxiety and Depression Association for more information regarding finding support.
Anxiety has become a more common problem nowadays and leaves people wondering “what kind of doctor should I see for anxiety?” This article will help you educate on anxiety and who to consult if you’re experiencing the symptoms. Seeking help is a major milestone in dealing with your anxiety.
Look around you and you will surely find help, either in the form of friends and family or professional mental health support. You and your doctor will have to work as a team to overcome anxiety disorder. You must be completely honest with your doctor and trust him for effective treatment.