Psychological Evaluation and Diagnosis

Psychological evaluation is an assessment to determine whether or not you have a mental health disorder. A medical professional like a family doctor, psychologist, or psychiatrist will conduct the assessment and suggest the next steps in treatment. At Southern California Sunrise Mental Health in Mission Viejo, we offer an array of different mental health treatments for a number of disorders.

Psychological Evaluation and Diagnosis | Our Program

Psychological Evaluation and Diagnosis

Psychological evaluation is an assessment to determine whether or not you have a mental health disorder. A medical professional like a family doctor, psychologist, or psychiatrist will conduct the assessment and suggest the next steps in treatment. At Southern California Sunrise Mental Health in Mission Viejo, we offer an array of different mental health treatments for a number of disorders.

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What Is Psychological Evaluation?

A psychological evaluation is also known to be an assessment of an individual’s mental health. During the review, the family medical doctor, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other qualified health professionals carefully checks the patient’s medical history and any mental disorders that may be causing additional issues to the person’s health.

This type of mental health assessment commonly comprises multiple segments. The components for this type of evaluation typically include the patient verbally answering specific questions, being asked to complete a written form such as a questionnaire, and undergoing a physical and psychological test. When seeking treatment for mental health problems, psychological assessments, and psychiatric evaluations are recommended as the initial steps that should be taken before any future mental illness treatment planning occurs.

For most psychobiologists, these evaluations assist with determining the potential extent that damage that the mental illness had done up to that point. Today, mental health professionals have the ability to gain crucial insight into their patient’s personal history and personality by using a variety of specialized evaluation techniques.

This is similar to a doctor requesting an X-ray or lab tests to carry out a blood work order to understand the direct causes of specific symptoms better. They are also powerful tools in identifying the patient’s strengths and weaknesses and other necessary information when putting together an effective treatment plan.

Signs That A Psychological Assessment Is Necessary

According to The American Psychiatric Association, there are many warning signs and symptoms that would deem a psych evaluation necessary. Knowing these early warning signs and symptoms that are developed because of mental illness can be extremely beneficial. Most obviously, being because proactive measures can be immediately taken and finding the appropriate help of a licensed psychologist or other mental health professionals can be done promptly.

A few of the more common warning signs that are often seen include:

Sudden and frequent mood swings: where someone consistently shows dramatic shifts in emotions and actions that are often hard to explain.
Drastic changes in sleep patterns and appetite: Personal care is often seen to take a severe blow because of the loss of interest due to the changes in sleep and eating patterns.
Newly developed anxiety disorders and paranoia: Many people develop different suspicions or fears about other people or situations while battling a mental health disorder.
Learning disabilities and difficulty dealing with problems: Expressing new challenges with rational thinking, speech, memory, and ability to concentrate on specific issues.
Frequently withdrawing themselves from all social interactions: All interest regarding interactions with others, including close friends or family members, seems to dwindle over short periods of time.
Exhibiting unusual behaviors: Frequently exhibiting new behaviors that do not fit the individual’s past and actions are seen being done in very uncharacteristic ways.

What Is Included With Mental Health Evaluations?

Generally speaking, when choosing to receive one of these types of assessments, it would be normal to expect the process to take anywhere between 20 and 90 minutes. Of course, some contributing factors would determine the test’s length, such as the reason behind the testing and the severity of the individual’s symptoms or condition. With today’s technology, in addition to the psych evaluations being conducted in-person with the therapist, they can also be done virtually.

Some of the more well-known types of testing that is involved with the psych evaluation process include:

Cognitive Evaluation

Like the mental evaluation process, during the cognitive evaluation, the doctor or therapist will test the patient’s ability to remember critical information, use sound reasoning and logic, and think clearly.

Personal History

The medical professionals conducting this type of psych evaluation will typically ask the patient some specific questions regarding the kind of lifestyle they lead and other crucial personal history factors that usually help identify the largest contributor of stress in their life. For example, the therapist may ask direct questions relating to the patient’s career, childhood, family, or marital status.

Mental Health History

During the assessment, this method is where the patient is typically asked about the particular symptoms that they may be experiencing. Questions about their personal life, if there is any history of mental health problems in their family, and if there have been any successful or unsuccessful psychiatric treatments that they may have previously received.

Physical Exam

There are some instances where physical illnesses were the primary cause of many symptoms that may appear to be very similar, if not identical, to those developed from a mental illness. Physical exams are frequently done to help the industry professionals determine if a neurological complication or other forms of physical disorders are to blame for creating the symptoms and side-effects.

During this option, patients are strongly encouraged to be completely transparent with their doctors and inform them about any and all physical conditions that they have already been diagnosed with, that they are aware of, or that already have been advised to take medications to manage.

Get a Psychological Evaluation Today

If you or a loved one has been struggling with mental health, consider getting professional help.

The team at Southern California Sunrise Recovery Center for Mental Health in Mission Viejo, Orange County can help you with an honest evaluation and diagnosis. Our goal is to provide the most helpful services possible to our patients through practical and genuine care.

Call us today with the button below or fill out the insurance verification form on this page to see if you qualify for an insurance-covered psychological evaluation and diagnosis.

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