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Psych Assessment - What to expect?

Discussion in 'Therapy and Medication' started by chemicalromance, Apr 11, 2007.

  1. I finally got an appointment for a psychiatric assessment (after three long painful months) and I'm just wondering what to expect? Will there be tests to take, or will it just be talking? If he decides I need treatment, what will happen next? Has anyone else been through this via the NHS?

    Also, I need some advice about Disability benefits and depression - as I quit my last job (in spite of sick notes from my doctor stating my depression, they told me to come back immediately or leave) I cannot claim Job Seekers Allowance for 26 weeks. I do not have the support of a doctor right now, but will the psychiatrist be able to help me make a claim; will he be able to write a sick note or letter?

    Thanks everyone!
  2. Scum

    Scum Well-Known Member


    I can only speak from UK experience, but it probably won't differ too much.

    The assessment will just be talking, no 'tests' or anything.

    They will ask you questions about things like how you are/what problems you see yourself as having, how you think they can help, what you want from them, your general health, education, family set up, aims and dreams, things like that, to build up a general picture of you.

    He will probably ask some seemingly random questions at the end, if he thinks he is nearing to a diagnosis, or suspecting what is wrong, or whatever.

    He will probably then decide whether or not to refer you to someone else that can help, refer you back to the person that referred you to him, or see you regularly himself.

    It might last about 50mins or so and there might be another person in there, ie a female chaperone, if the psych is a guy. (this is more for his protection than yours).

    If you need a sick note, talk to him about that and explain. I am sure he will either be able to help you, or point you to someone who can help.

    It will probably feel very scary, but once you are there it will probably be pretty painless. Remember that the more you tell him, the more he can help you.

    If there is anything specific you want him to know, then write it down and give it to him when you go. That way you won't forget to say anything you meant to.

    All assessments vary a bit, but I have had my fair share and they have all been pretty similar to this.

    Hope it helps.

    Take care and good luck
  3. Thanks Scum, that was very helpful :) Writing things down will probably be a good idea for me as I never talk about how I'm feeling. When someone asks me how I am I just say 'I'm fine' no matter what!

    I guess I'm kind of scared that I won't be taken seriously, which has been my experience with the NHS so far. I'm afraid that I'll never get any treatment because this really is my last chance.
  4. Scum

    Scum Well-Known Member

    The psych will assess you and take you seriously. You have been taken seriously already, remember, because, even if you had to fight for it, you have got a referral to the psych.

    Just remember, the more you tell, the more they can help you.

    Glad it was helpful :)