Dual Diagnosis

What You Need to Know About Mental Health Services

Mental health services can be a confusing maze. Our blog talks you through some of the most common mental health providers you’re likely to encounter.

What You Need to Know about Mental Health Services

Table of contents

Written by

Brian MooreBrian Moore

Content Writer

Reviewed by

Jeremy ArztJeremy Arzt

Chief Clinical Officer

November 22, 2022

The Edge Treatment Center

There is a high prevalence of problems that are related to one's mental health.

Some populations or families might seem to have a higher incidence of them than others, but it is hard to predict where a mental illness is likely to prevail more. Sadness and anxiety are the more understood forms of it, whereas bipolar disorders are lesser understood and often need the guidance of a mental health expert. These conditions can severely impair a person's capacity for thinking and behaving normally. It might be devastating to learn that you or someone in your family has a mental disorder.

However, help is available as there is a wide range of treatments offered by different types of mental health services. People must understand a bit more about the kind of professionals and establishments that provide these services.

Read ahead whether you are seeking emergency mental health services or you need help for a friend or family member diagnosed with substance abuse creating mental health issues…

Mental health services are provided across different establishments, from government-run hospitals and psychiatric wards to community health centers. Such help is also available via schools and private clinics.

Here, one can find specialists who provide expert care. Professionals in the field of mental healthcare services go by different titles depending upon their qualifications for the job. To find the right expert, you should understand more about the various specializations in the field of mental health services. For instance, The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) runs a helpline that might make it easy when you are searching for “emergency mental health services near me”.

Before we delve into what options are available for someone searching for comprehensive mental health services, it is vital to understand a bit more about the more common symptoms that signal the need for medical care. It might be a good idea to recommend a mental health service to your loved one if the person is showing the following symptoms:

  • Inability to cope with stress

  • Suicidal thoughts

  • Extreme fear

  • Unexplained guilt

  • Prolonged sadness

  • Fits of anger

  • Social withdrawal

  • Irrational mood changes

  • Alcohol or drug abuse

  • Delusions and paranoia

  • Unfounded hostility

Role of Federal & State Government in Mental Health Services

As far as mental health is concerned, the federal government collaborates with the states at many levels. The federal government's responsibility in the area of mental health includes the supervision of systems created to provide assistance, guidance, and routine care. It oversees the role of providers and the protection of consumer rights in this domain. The federal government provides significant funding along with regulatory guidance for mental health care, ensuring that essential criteria for quality of care are complied with across the states. As a result of the autonomy that each state enjoys in determining the specifics of its healthcare system, the landscape of mental health regulation is rather complex.

The type of available services varies significantly from one state to the next and even across counties. The federal government has put minimum state requirements to maintain specific mental healthcare systems.

Still, individual states can step beyond these provisions to provide better quality services, ensuring people in need get easier and greater access.

Role of Social Workers & Support Groups in Mental Health Services

Social workers play a vital role in helping people across local communities lead healthier lives by providing clarity about the scope of treatment needed. Clinical social workers have educational backgrounds that equip them to assess a patient's mental health and provide treatment recommendations based on evidence-based practices. They can also provide advocacy; sometimes, they might be trusted with case management services. You can learn more about your mental health condition through self-help resources and support groups prevalent in North American mental health services. This support and advice for managing a mental disease are invaluable, and social support groups are great for combating loneliness that seems to accompany most types of mental health illnesses.

Role of Psychotherapists, Counselors, and Psychologists in Mental Health Services

A trained therapist can help individuals gain more insight into their feelings and actions, allowing them to develop better coping-up strategies. Their guidance and support might be necessary for achieving personal milestones along the way to mental health recovery. Psychological problems may also be easier to assess with the help of trained professionals. It's the first and the most important step to start talking with a therapist about any emotional issues. The educational guidance provided by counselors and psychotherapists helps people struggling with stress, helping them relax and better handle difficult situations. Such trained professionals offer numerous approaches to talking it out.

Trained therapists or psychologists can provide more specific treatments, such as dialectical behavior therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy. One-on-one settings are used for several patient groups with similar mental health struggles. When things are difficult at home, it might be helpful to talk them out with a therapist. This can be done one-on-one or in a group setting. Medication-based treatment might be recommended to those going through tough times in life, even if they don't have a history of mental health issues, typically seen in people suffering from grief due to the loss of a loved one or divorce.

Educational qualifications are very important for providing such mental health services. Whether it is paid or free mental health services, doctoral degrees are required for practicing as a psychologist. These professionals have expertise in clinical psychology and counseling apart from mental health education. They use a series of interviews, examinations, and tests to determine the patient's mental health. These are experts at diagnosing diseases and administering care. Some therapists choose to focus on one area of mental health specialists, such as cognitive behavioral therapy.

Such medical care professionals are experts in evaluating mental health and administering treatment, often armed with certifications that can be easily verified.

Professionals in this domain come with various titles, ranging from counselor and clinician to therapist or mental health caregiver. Working with any of these mental health professionals can lead to the timely identification of mental health problems and symptom reduction, as well as clarity about challenges that need to be overcome to return to a healthier state of mind.

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Role of Outpatient Facilities in Mental Health Services

This category of mental health services includes many privately-owned centers across the country. Day programs are a common treatment option at mental health centers like this. Medication management, group & individual therapy, and coping skills workshops are common forms of treatment offered at such centers. Patients with less severe symptoms are a good fit for day treatment centers since they do not require patients to stay overnight or be permanently admitted. After a patient's stay at an inpatient psychiatric facility ends, they may transition into a day treatment program. Mental health services for substance abuse are frequently provided on an outpatient basis. This means that the patients are able to maintain their independence by living at home while receiving treatment at a credible institution. While some programs need daily attendance, others are more relaxed. People can expect comprehensive medication management, group therapy, and everyday support and guidance at many community mental health centers offering outpatient services.

Role of Inpatient Care in Mental Health ServiceS

Separate wards within regular hospitals are often dedicated to providing mental health services. These are among the more popular settings for delivering mental health care along with outpatient and residential facilities. Many communities lack the patient volume/density needed to support maintaining dedicated mental health institutions or residential programs. Instead, hospital-type care programs are offered within the general medical services of a hospital. This includes help for emergencies involving mental health, such as for patients who are severely psychotic and need inpatient supervision right away.

Inpatient treatment for mental health issues is often short-term, and often, it is aimed at restoring some stability before the patient can be moved to outpatient care units.

Role of Residential Treatment Facility in Mental Health Services for Children & Adults

Across the United States, more than 8 percent of treatment centers for mental health issues are residential facilities for adults, and more than 7 percent are residential facilities for children. Most residential treatment institutions are independent, and many are non-profits. They provide mental health services that are needed for the longer term, more suited for mental health problems that are so severe that the person needs inpatient or extended care. This typically happens when the mental health condition presents a clear and present danger to the safety of the person himself and those around him.

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Role of Psychiatric Hospitals in Mental Health Services

Of the total facilities providing mental health care, just about 6% can be termed fully scaled psychiatric hospitals. These establishments offer a more comprehensive range of specialists available under the same roof, ranging from doctors and nurses to other trained medical experts–just like at any other hospital in the country. The length of the patient's stay in a psychiatric hospital is hard to compute upfront. It usually corresponds to the patient's improvement over time and ability to foot the bill for a lengthy stay at a psychiatric hospital. Both urgent and less demanding instances of mental health cases can be treated in these institutions. Although doctors in such institutions have expertise in mental health, they can double up as experts for physical ailments too. However, the primary focus is on treating mental health issues, and a commonly recommended treatment is Detoxification which is often recommended to people struggling with drug or alcohol addictions. Such mental health facilities might offer options in inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs and extended stays. They might have teams that have proven expertise in providing children's mental health services or for adults.

Role of the Department of Veterans Affairs in Mental Health Services

The US Department of Veterans Affairs also contributes to the medical care facilities in this domain with its hospitals specializing in mental health care–setting it apart among North American mental health services providers. This government agency is geared at providing care for the armed forces community. It is most likely to offer care for people suffering mental trauma due to military duty or problems like substance abuse.

Telepsychiatry & Remotely Delivered Care in Virtual Mental Health Services

Psychiatric evaluation and treatment are evolving. Psychological counseling and therapy are now provided remotely also, through the use of technologies and digital mediums using audio-visual aids. People who are located in rural or underserved areas, those who are unable to leave their homes due to mobility-limiting illness, and those who find themselves stuck in an emergency can benefit greatly from these services since they increase the ease of access to care for mental health issues. The overall effectiveness of such mental health care mediums and services is engaging attention, and the opinions can be divided, but sometimes, remote care is the only way!

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Role of Prescription Medicine in Mental Health Services

Prescribed medications are a common part of providing mental health care. Treatments for mental illness using medications help to restore the balance of neurochemicals that play a vital role in feeling and thinking. Some conditions of the mind cannot be cured by counseling alone–they need prescription drugs. Such medications can also increase the efficacy of treatments like psychotherapy. Different types of prescription medications serve different purposes. People who have been recommended such medications should ask about the potential risks. The following types can write medication prescriptions of medical field professionals:

  • Psychiatrists

  • Mental Health Nurses

  • Primary Care Physicians

  • Family Nurse Practitioners

  • Certified Peer Specialists

In Conclusion

Mental illness treatment can be provided across different types of locations, and it often involves a multidisciplinary team that is most likely to consist of clinicians apart from counselors and psychologists. Whether inpatient or outpatient, there is every chance of finding qualified psychiatrists apart from other mental health professionals in such care settings. Many times, detoxification services are a part of the mental health services package, more applicable to people who come in with a history of alcohol and drug addictions, and every care program might not involve the use of prescription drugs.

The Edge Treatment Center Provides Comprehensive Care

People and families seeking addiction recovery and rehabilitation services often turn to The Edge Treatment Center as they realize the virtues of comprehensive supervision and constant support that the facility offers. To ensure that the most difficult addiction patterns can be broken and that those being treated can quickly discover a way to enjoy a better, addiction-free life, The Edge has a team of rehab specialists who also help people with a mental health issue.

If you’d like to learn more about our facility’s programs, please contact us today.

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