Some mental health challenges cannot be resolved by therapy alone. There are times when people need medical intervention in the form of psychotropic medication. Unfortunately, with so much stigma around mental health issues, people frequently feel ashamed to turn to medicine for assistance. They often feel weak for needing to rely on medication to feel mentally stable. The reality is mental illness is a medical condition where your brain is not functioning correctly. If you had high cholesterol, you would likely not hesitate to take medication to correct this imbalance. Psychotropic medication is no different; it helps balance your brain.
Psychiatrists are the professionals to go to if you consider medication as a part of your mental health regimen. Psychiatrists are trained as physicians and have four additional years of specialized training in psychiatry. They prescribe medication for various mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and PTSD. While some people are prescribed psychiatric medications by their primary care provider, a psychiatrist will have much more pertinent knowledge and expertise.
If you are currently seeing a therapist, they might be able to refer you to psychiatrists they know and like. Don’t hesitate to set up multiple consults with different providers to optimize your chances of choosing someone that is a good fit for you. Research shows that the relationship with your provider influences treatment outcomes. Make sure you find someone that feels safe and who you can trust. Your mental health is essential. You are important.
Mental health challenges can stem from many places – a genetic predisposition, continued exposure to stress, unresolved trauma, and addiction issues. While therapy alone sometimes isn’t enough for people, psychotropic medication alone often isn’t enough. The best practice is a combination of therapy and psychotropic medication for someone dealing with mental health challenges that have become too difficult to manage.
If you are struggling with mental health issues, please consider getting professional help. There is no need to suffer in silence. You are not alone, and support is out there.