Individuals who have never attended a psychotherapy session are unsure what to expect. There is no way to tell if the therapist will ask about their feelings or past or if they will be asked about their fears.
The truth is that each therapist uniquely approaches their first therapy session—with consideration to the presenting symptoms of the patient. We talk about realistic expectations for your psychiatric sessions below.
The first few minutes of your visit to a psychiatrist's office will be similar to any other healthcare appointment. After checking in with a receptionist, you will be asked to fill out forms and wait to be called.
During your initial appointment, you and your psychiatrist will get to know each other. You won't be expected to expose your deepest fears, traumas, and secrets right away. Instead, you will be encouraged to talk about any information about yourself, such as your hobbies or what you do for work. You can also ask your psychiatrist about their credentials or interests.
Your psychiatrist will want to know what led you to seek mental health treatment. They will discuss what you've written in the forms and your reported signs and symptoms. You'll have to tell them what measures or therapies you've tried before so they can determine whether they were successful or not. This will start the process of creating your treatment plan which you will be prescribed within a few more sessions.
Following the introduction to your condition, your psychiatrist will ask questions to get more details. The questions may go as follows:
The questions asked during sessions are not only one-sided. You can also ask your psychiatrists:
Check-in with yourself after your first therapy session. Consider how you felt about it and your therapist. This will determine if the next session would be with the same one or if you need to find another who is more suitable for you. Again, one session will not provide a cure. Keep in mind that therapy is a process and it will take a number of sessions before you start to feel its benefits.
At Luminous Vitality Behavioral Health, we can help you through in-person and telepsychiatry sessions. Inquire at our practice today or visit our Luminello page.