Psychiatry Evaluation and Psychopharmacology
A psychiatric evaluation at The Children’s Center is performed by a physician with specialty training and expertise in child and adolescent psychiatry. The initial evaluation lasts approximately 90 minutes. Your doctor will meet with you and your child together and individually (subject to the child’s comfort level). By eliciting your concerns regarding your child’s emotional and behavioral health, your doctor will gain an understanding of your child. Your doctor will ask questions about your child’s functioning at home and at school, physical health, early development, and about any prior psychological treatments. Your child will have the opportunity to discuss what has been challenging for them as well as their interests, abilities, and “what makes them tick.”
At the end of the initial appointment, your doctor will discuss their diagnostic impression. Medication may or may not be recommended on the initial visit. With your permission, your doctor will gather information as needed from trusted sources who know your child well (e.g. the child’s psychotherapist, a supportive teacher) for further diagnostic clarity. If medication is recommended, your doctor will provide ongoing care to monitor your child’s progress on the medication as well as monitor for any side effects. Follow up appointments are generally 25 minutes. Your doctor is available to you between appointments for clinical guidance and support. If medication is not recommended, an alternative treatment modality such as psychotherapy will be recommended or simply education will be provided. At The Children’s Center, we treat the whole person. At each visit, you and your doctor will discuss how your child is doing socially, academically, and any recent changes in their life. This multifaceted understanding of your child leads to comprehensive and effective treatment plans.