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What to Ask About Mental Health Services

If you or a loved one is suffering from a mental illness like depression or schizophrenia, finding the right help is crucial. When speaking to mental healthcare providers, ask these questions to ensure you find the best psychiatric or other mental health practitioner to help with the condition.

  • What restrictions do you have as a mental health practitioner?
    Three primary types of practitioners exist: psychiatrists, psychologists and counselors. Psychiatrists have the ability to prescribe medications, while the others do not. If you have a condition that requires medication, your only option is a psychiatrist.

  • What mental illnesses do you treat?
    Many mental healthcare providers have experience in specific types of cases. Some treat general depression and anxiety disorders, while others focus on treating psychiatric conditions like schizophrenia. Practitioners may also have expertise in treating substance abuse.

  • Do you offer individual or only group therapy?
    Make sure that you select a practitioner that offers the type of therapy with which you are the most comfortable.

  • What treatment methods do you employ?
    Mental health practitioners have many different approaches to helping clients. Some use talk therapy, where patients discuss their problems. Others use role-playing or hypnosis. Psychiatrists often use medications to help treat mental illnesses.

  • Do you accept insurance?
    Many health insurance plans will cover psychological or psychiatric care; however, not all providers accept all types of insurance. In addition, some providers may choose not to take insurance at all.

  • What is your payment policy?
    If you don't have health insurance to cover the cost of your visits, you'll need to know when you are expected to pay for services. Some mental healthcare practitioners will require you to pay at the time of your visits, while others will mail you bills. Also inquire about what forms of payment the practitioners accept, such as cash, personal checks and credit or debit cards.
  • Mental Health America
    Finding the right mental health services for your needs can be difficult if you don't know where to start. Our nationwide association can help with the widest network of counselors and services in the nation.
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    American Mental Health Counselors Association
    For anyone in need of mental health services, our association provides valuable resources. Get more information on mental health services and find the perfect counselor near you.
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    Introspection Counseling Services Write review for this local business
    5555 Morningside Dr, Houston, TX 77005
    (832) 294-3212  
    We are the licensed counselor professionals. We will help you with therapy and mental relaxation so that you may start to let go of all your anxieties and stresses, until you are dealing better with your psychological state.
    Unique Mind Care Write review for this local business
    1900 Saint James Pl Ste 800, Houston, TX 77056
    (713) 660-1100  
    Unique Mind Care is a one-of-a-kind health and wellness practice. Lead by Nancy White, the caring, qualified staff use state of the art tools and techniques to help you toward a more joyful life.
    Gray Chuck Ph.D. & Associates Write review for this local business
    8303 Southwest Fwy, Houston, TX 77074
    (713) 774-2122  
    Chuck Gray, Ph.D. & Associates specializes in helping adults with relationship issues. Warm, licensed professionals with at least 15 years experience combine with a friendly staff to help you fulfill your personal and relationship desires.
    Comprehensive Therapy Write review for this local business
    Houston, TX 77263
    (713) 869-8552  
    Ambler Joyce Write review for this local business
    Houston, TX 77263
    (713) 520-1777  
    XANGO Independent Network Builder Write review for this local business
    Po Box 590766, Houston, TX 77259
    (832) 630-6948  
    Depelchin Children's Center Write review for this local business
    Houston, TX 77263
    (281) 730-2335  
    Verbal Behavior Clinics of Texas, LLC Write review for this local business
    1016 W Alabama St, Houston, TX 77006
    (713) 528-2343  
    Mental Health Co-Op Write review for this local business
    503 Sul Ross St, Houston, TX 77006
    (713) 524-8705  
    Mental Health Co-Op Write review for this local business
    3803 Bute St, Houston, TX 77006
    (832) 582-8263  
    Mental Health Co Op Write review for this local business
    4315 Jack St, Houston, TX 77006
    (832) 487-9515  
    Empowered Transformations, LLC Write review for this local business
    2107 Brun St, Houston, TX 77019
    (832) 818-5952  
    Montrose Mental Health Write review for this local business
    1527 W Alabama St, Houston, TX 77006
    (713) 492-0723  
    River Oaks Psychological Services Write review for this local business
    1973 W Gray St, Houston, TX 77019
    (713) 521-4568  
    Ginny Fullerton, PhD PLLC Write review for this local business
    1401 Richmond Ave, Houston, TX 77006
    (713) 568-6837  
    The Gathering Place Write review for this local business
    3630 W Dallas St, Houston, TX 77019
    (713) 715-7081  
    Mental Health Coop Write review for this local business
    716 W Alabama St, Houston, TX 77006
    (832) 519-9651  
    Mid-Town Counseling & Evaluation Center Write review for this local business
    1615 Calumet St, Houston, TX 77004
    (713) 480-2538  
    Quentin Dinardo Ph.D. Write review for this local business
    3303 Louisiana St, Houston, TX 77006
    (713) 526-0400  
    Cadwalder Quitman Clinic Write review for this local business
    1320 Quitman St, Houston, TX 77009
    (713) 227-8246  
    Mental Health Association of Greater Write review for this local business
    2111 Norfolk St, Houston, TX 77098
    (713) 523-8963  
    Shirley A. Beyer, M.Ed., LPC Write review for this local business
    3701 Kirby Dr, Houston, TX 77098
    (713) 637-4859  
    Angela Johnson Write review for this local business
    3730 Kirby Dr, Houston, TX 77098
    (713) 234-0026  

    Mental health services exist to serve many purposes, the first of which is to provide relief for those suffering from emotional and behavioral disorders. Patients receive treatment through therapy sessions, led by licensed psychiatric doctors and mental health counselors. Psychiatrists are essentially medical doctors and can provide prescription medication to treat a range of disorders, from schizophrenia to depression.

    Since many mental illnesses, such as depression and schizophrenia, can manifest themselves in physical ways, patients who exhibit symptoms can be treated for those as well. This is common in drug abusers, for instance, who may experience withdrawals and need to be hospitalized in clinics and centers for medical treatment and observation.

    Counselors can work directly with patients or through a series of group therapy sessions. Some mental health services focus on patients that have experienced a brain trauma or disorder. Other counselors may focus on treating substance abuse patients. Whatever the focus, mental health services can connect people with the right resources for them. This may involve psychiatric care, medication or counseling in conjunction with medication.

    Sometimes people with mental disorders just need someone to talk to. In this case, they can contact mental health services that boast hotlines, for example, where people can call at any time of the day or night and speak to a volunteer or qualified counselor about anger or anxiety. Mental health services may also provide temporary housing, mental illness outpatient counseling, free victim services and crisis intervention services. Psychologists can assist with socialization, preventative health care, daily living activities and community involvement.

    All of these programs and more are available to those who seek it out, either on their own or through their doctor.

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