Assessment: The First Step in Successful Psychotherapy

Receiving mental health treatment is a complex process. However, with proper evaluation, assessment, and diagnosis, creating an effective plan for psychotherapy becomes much easier.

Assessment: The First Step in Successful Psychotherapy

How do I start?

Most psychotherapy begins with a consultation, during which a counselor will speak with you in order to identify the issues you may be struggling with. They will get to know you on a personal level, listening to the concerns prompting you to seek treatment. After consulting with you, a counselor may refer you to a specific evaluation or assessment based on your individual needs.

Why should I seek professional assessment?

Information on mental health is readily available on the internet, so self-diagnosis can be tempting. However, it’s best to leave assessments up to the professionals. Only a professional trained to use the DSM-V is equipped to diagnose mental illnesses. An official diagnosis can assist your clinician in outlining a treatment plan, along with opening up other options for treatment, such as medication.

What is the DSM-V?

The DSM-V is a manual used by mental health professionals in order to diagnose patients. It contains symptoms and descriptive diagnosis categories for a variety of mental illnesses. Clinicians utilize the DSM-V because it provides a universal diagnosis criteria—meaning there are clear and measurable standards for diagnosis, leading to a standardized evaluation process.

When should I seek psychological evaluation or assessment?

If you or someone you know is dealing with mental health issues, seeking assessment is a great first step to treatment. Here are some symptoms of disorders requiring professional evaluation and/or diagnosis:

  • Attention Difficulties
  • Lack of Motivation
  • Feelings of Anxiety
  • Sudden Mood Changes
  • Paranoia
  • Low Self-Esteem
  • Issues with Body Image
  • Obsessive Behavior
  • Poor Impulse Control
  • Problems Controlling Drug Use
  • Social Difficulties

This list is not all-inclusive; however, if you’re suffering from any of these symptoms or have other concerns, know there are options for treatment. To get started, contact us here today.

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