Should I Use a Psychiatrist for Addiction Treatment?
Psychiatrists are physicians who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health and psychiatric disorders. A psychiatrist is a doctor who can prescribe medicine and also offer therapy and other treatment options beneficial to those suffering from these disorders.
When it comes to treatment of addiction – whether alcohol, opioid dependence or other addiction – a psychiatrist can be a beneficial member of your team of physicians, therapists or drug and alcohol counselors who work with you in overcoming that addiction.
A psychiatrist can play an especially important role in the first phase of recovery which is the detoxification phase when an addict is safely weaned off the addictive substance. The medical approach of a psychiatrist is especially helpful, because addiction can alter and affect the brain’s neurochemistry.
If the substance abuse occurs along with another psychiatric disorder such as Bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, depression or anxiety, a psychiatrist can be especially helpful because treatment often involves medication along with behavioral therapy.
What Can I Expect from a Psychiatrist Who Treats Addiction?
A psychiatrist who treats drug or alcohol addiction will want to know the patient’s full medical history and will work in conjunction with any current counselors or doctors.
When looking for a psychiatrist to treat addiction, you want to make certain that they are licensed and either have certification in addiction psychiatry or have enough experience dealing with addiction cases.