What is a mental health evaluation?
A mental health evaluation is an exam of your emotional health that assists a mental health professional in diagnosing a mental disorder or illness. Mental disorders are common and affect more than half of all Americans at some point in their lives. There are many types of mental disorders. Some of the most common disorders include:
Depression and mood disorders – These mental disorders are different than normal sadness or grief. They can cause extreme sadness, anger, and/or frustration.
Anxiety disorders – Anxiety can cause excessive worry or fear at real or imagined situations.
Eating disorders – These disorders cause obsessive thoughts and behaviors related to food and body image. Eating disorders may cause people to severely limit the amount of food they eat, excessively overeat (binge), or do a combination of both.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) – ADHD is one of the most common mental disorders in children. It can also continue into adulthood. People with ADHD have trouble paying attention and controlling impulsive behavior.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – This disorder can happen after you live through a traumatic life event, such as a war or serious accident. People with PTSD feel stressed and afraid, even long after the danger is over.
Substance abuse and addictive disorders. These disorders involve excessive use of alcohol or drugs. People with substance abuse disorders are at risk for overdose and death.
Bipolar disorder – formerly called manic depression. People with bipolar disorder have alternating episodes of mania (extreme highs) and depression.
Schizophrenia and psychotic disorders – These are among the most serious psychiatric disorders. They can cause people to see, hear, and/or believe things that aren’t real.
The effects of mental disorders range from mild to severe to life-threatening. Fortunately, many people with mental disorders can be successfully treated with medicine and/or talk therapy.
A mental health evaluation is where a professional, such as a psychologist or psychiatrist checks to see if you are experiencing a clinical mental health crisis. A mental health evaluation will help to determine the exact nature and extent of a person’s mental disorder and offer information that may be helpful in finding additional resources and selecting an effective mental health treatment(s).
Mental Health Evaluations assist in diagnosing the nature and severity of a person’s problems with memory, thought processes, and behaviors.
At Morgan Health Centers, our evaluations are customized to the unique needs of each patient. A mental health evaluation aims to:
- Rule out other conditions that may be causing the symptoms
- Diagnose a mental disorder
- Include the patient while making decisions or changes with their mental health care plan
- Identify long-term problems that might emerge in the future
In general, a comprehensive mental health evaluation is intended to offer increased awareness of why an individual may be struggling to meet developmental, academic, or social milestones. The process often helps to solidify appropriate clinical diagnoses, but more importantly, works to identify which interventional or support services are recommended in order for individuals to perform at their best across multiple settings.
As such, upon written consent, our team will communicate as needed with physicians, psychiatrists, therapists, school professionals, and other psychologists in order to coordinate management of the individual’s treatment plan, educational programs, and/or other necessary referrals or placements.
The professionals at Morgan Mental Health provide the following psychological and/or psychiatric mental health evaluations:
- Anxiety & Depression
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Attention Disorders (ADHD)
- Bariatric Surgery
- Cognitive Issues
- Developmental Disabilities
- Dissociative Disorders
- Elderly Persons Disorders
- Impulse Control Disorders
- Intellectual Functioning
- Learning Disabilities
- Mood/Personality Disorders
- Neurodevelopmental Disorders
- Personality Disorders
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Screening for Auditory Disorder
- Social & Emotional Disorders
- Spinal Cord Stimulator
- Thinking Disorders
If you are seeking clarity or an evaluation for a mental health diagnosis, this can be obtained through the process of either a psychiatric or psychological mental health evaluation, though in some instances additional evaluations may be needed to make a determination.
A psychological evaluation is provided by a Psychologist and involves standardized testing (ex. IQ, processing speed, Rorschach test, aptitude testing).
A psychiatric evaluation is completed by a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner or Psychiatrist. These are generally completed though a clinical interview with the individual and in some cases family members. It may also include other measures (ex. Child Behavior Checklist, Beck depression inventory, Vanderbilt ADHD symptoms checklist).