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Dr. Weinel offers medication management as an adjunct to psychotherapy to help alleviate mental health symptoms. Medication management is the process of prescribing, monitoring, and adjusting medications to treat mental health conditions. Certain conditions can be treated more effectively with a combination of medication and psychotherapy. The goals of medication management are similar to other treatments: to improve functioning, alleviate symptoms, and enhance a person’s quality of life.
Medication management involves a comprehensive assessment in which a psychiatrist gathers information about a person’s current symptoms as well as information about their medical history (including mental health history) as well as their family and, social history. This evaluation is critical in formulating an accurate diagnosis and determining the most appropriate medication options. Medications are chosen based on the specific diagnosis, symptom severity, potential drug interactions, age, gender, cost, and history of an individual’s response to medications in the past.
Before starting any medication, Dr. Weinel will provide a recommendation and engage in a discussion regarding the potential benefits and risks of the medication, including possible side effects. Medications are started at low doses and slowly increased over time to an effective dose. This approach decreases the risk of side effects and allows a person’s body time to adjust to a new medication. After starting a medication, patients will be seen for regular follow-up appointments to monitor effects of the medication as people can respond differently - what works for one person might not work for another! Follow-up appointments provide the opportunity to track the medication’s effectiveness over time and make changes as needed. It is important that patients have open communication regarding their symptoms, side effects, and any concerns, so that their treatment plan can be adjusted effectively to best target their symptoms.
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