What to Expect From Your First Online Psychiatry Appointment
It can be hard to reach out and take the necessary steps towards making your first online psychiatry appointment and we know that many people feel nervous in the lead up to their initial session. While we understand that seeing your online psychiatrist for the first time can leave you feeling anxious, knowing what to expect at your initial appointment ahead of time can help to calm your nerves.
So, if you’ve made your first online appointment with one of our psychiatrists, this post will help you learn what to expect from your initial visit, along with some tips to help you feel more prepared and at ease during your session.
First of all, how do online appointments work?
Our telehealth psychiatry consultations are carried out over the internet, using our high grade, secure video conference software – similar to Skype. Instead of meeting your Psychiatrist in person, you will talk together using a computer, smartphone or tablet. You’ll be able to hear each other talking in real-time and will also see each other on the screen.
Many people find online psychiatry consultations to be extremely convenient as it cuts down on travel time and is particularly helpful if you live in a remote area or find it difficult to travel.
What do I need to access my online appointment?
Our Tele-Psychiatry service is simple to use. All you need is a:
- Private and quiet room
- Reliable and fast internet connection
- Tablet, smartphone or computer
If you choose to use a computer, you will need a webcam and a microphone. However, most modern computers now have these inbuilt.
Three things to know before your online psychiatry consultation
Here are a few points that you may find helpful to know so you can feel more prepared for your consultation.
Have your medical history at hand
At your appointment, you’ll be asked about your psychiatric and medical history, both personal and family. Be prepared for your appointment by having the following items ready:
- A full list of your current medications, including psychiatric medications
- A list of any psychiatric medications you might have taken in the past and how long you were taking these for
- Any previous diagnoses or medical concerns you have
- Your family history of mental health issues, if there are any
In addition, if you’ve previously seen a psychiatrist, it’s always beneficial to bring along a copy of your previous records or to request that these are sent to us ready for your consultation.
Understand that your psychiatrist will need to ask you questions
Once your session begins, you can expect your psychiatrist to ask a number of questions, the first one being the main reason for your appointment. While being asked questions can make some people feel nervous, remember that there is no right or wrong answer and our psychiatrists will guide you through this initial interview. To get the most out of your appointment, make sure you communicate what you have been experiencing and share the goals that you’re hoping to achieve from your treatment.
Your psychiatrist will help you work towards creating a treatment plan
Since our psychiatrists can manage and prescribe medications, your options for treatment will be explained at the end of your consultation. Your personalised treatment plan may include:
- Medication options
- A referral to one of our psychologists
- Practical strategies for addressing your concerns
- Recommendations for baseline tests before starting new medications, or other tests to rule out any underlying medical conditions that may be contributing to your symptoms
If you have any questions about your treatment plan, be sure to mention these to your psychiatrist before the end of your consultation.
Get the help you deserve
Feeling nervous about your first online psychiatry appointment is common, but it’s important not to let these fears stop you from getting the treatment that you need and deserve. If you have any further questions about our online psychiatry services, please get in touch here.
To learn the differences between a Psychologist and Psychiatrist, check out our blog post here.