How to Test for Mental Illnesses
Mental illnesses can be hard to identify, especially if you don’t know what to look for. Although many mental illnesses are obvious in their symptoms, some are more subtle and may go undiagnosed for long periods of time.
This blog post details four key mental illnesses and provides tips on how to test for them, helping you to identify whether or not you may have an illness sooner rather than later.
What Are the Different Types of Tests?
Doctors may use physical tests and procedures in addition to psychological tests when determining whether a patient has a mental illness.
Physical testing is important because certain conditions, such as infections or tumors, can cause psychiatric symptoms. A doctor can also perform blood tests and imaging scans to check for any physical issues that could be contributing to your symptoms.
In addition, many medications used in psychiatric treatment can have side effects.
Doctors may also recommend further testing (such as blood work) if they think your medication dosage is too high or too low.
What Are Some Ways To Get Help?
If you are experiencing depression, anxiety, panic attacks or some other mental health problem that makes you feel like you can’t cope with everyday life, you may be wondering what your options are for getting help.
It can be difficult to figure out where you can get help and even more challenging to find a mental health professional who will listen and make accommodations for your needs.
While it can be hard work searching for treatment, there are many ways available. You might want to ask your primary care physician if they have any suggestions, oftentimes they will know of at least one nearby specialist.
Can I Self-Diagnose My Diagnosis?
Diagnosing yourself with a mental illness is impossible. That is because there is no way of testing a brain, you can only test your reactions, which are sometimes indicative of mental illness but not in and of themselves.
If you have a family history of schizophrenia, that doesn’t mean you have it, too. Plus, even if your behavior does line up with a disorder like depression or anxiety, it could still be due to something else like relationship problems or trauma.
The best way to get diagnosed is by speaking with a therapist or other trained mental health professional. She can ask questions about what you are going through and conduct tests that will help her make an accurate diagnosis.
There are a ton of questions that go into finding treatment for any mental illness. For example, do you have insurance? If so, what kind and does it cover treatment? How much does treatment cost out-of-pocket? Are there government programs available?
It is important to start with a professional who can give you an unbiased opinion on your options and help you identify your treatment options.
Many people think they only have one option the doctor they just saw but it is almost always not true. Often times, there are more affordable (or even free) options available that treat certain mental illnesses really well. Getting second opinions is incredibly helpful in getting quality care at an affordable price.
Should I Keep My Disorder A Secret?
The choice is yours. You can discuss your mental health issues with friends and family, or you can wait until you are in a more stable place before sharing.
However, while doing so may help you build support systems and relationships, it may be risky as well.
It is possible that those who know about your illness will respond negatively or treat you differently if they don’t understand what’s going on.
No matter how open you are about your disorder, it’s never okay for someone to spread rumors about you or judge you based on your illness alone.
Depression, bipolar disorder, ADHD and other mental illnesses are misunderstood medical conditions that often occur together with other serious disorders.
For these reasons, treating these conditions is both difficult and important. If you or someone you know suffers from symptoms of one of these illnesses, it is vital that you have a comprehensive evaluation done in order to have a proper diagnosis made.
A comprehensive evaluation may include a variety of psychological tests. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a mental illness test kit but there are several different types of tests your doctor may use in order to give an accurate diagnosis
How do psychiatrists diagnose mental illness?
Psychiatrists, mental health professionals and medical doctors and can order or perform a variety of medical and/or psychological tests. These tests, along with clinical features like signs and symptoms help these experts to diagnose mental health related conditions.