Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Difference Between A Psychiatrist and A Psychologist?

Although psychiatrists and psychologists are both experts in the field of mental health, they differ from each other by the training they receive as well as their contribution to the treatment process of mental disorders. Psychiatrists complete their residency in psychiatry after graduating from a medical school of 6 years. Because they are physicians, they have the authority and competence to treat mental disorders with medication.
Psychologists graduate from the department of science and literature after studying for 4 years. After completing their undergraduate education, they complete their specialization in the sub-fields of psychology for 2 years. Clinical psychologists are involved in the treatment of mental disorders. Only people who complete their specialization in Clinical Psychology after their undergraduate education are authorized to do psychotherapy. Psychologists are not authorized to prescribe medications. However, they manage psychotherapy processes based on several theoretical and scientific principles.


How Should I Choose While Deciding on Getting Professional Help?

Agreeing to get professional support for your problems is the most important step. However, it is also important to where you will take this step. Instead of moving on based on hearsay, you should choose a mental health professional specializing in their field, who is competent and committed to ethical principles.

When Should I Consult a Specialist?

You don't have to wait for a problem in your life or to experience a 'big' problem approved by everyone to consult and seek help from a specialist. Just as the treatment success is lower after you've gangrene or in the case of progressed disease, when you postpone your consultation for a mental condition, the treatment becomes more complicated when the problems have become chronic and your defenses have collapsed. For example, getting help when problems arise in marriage, not after deciding to divorce, would be much more effective. For this reason, it will be useful to consult a mental health professional if you experience any symptoms of psychiatric disorders or have any distress, though it does not fit any description, or if you have difficulty in dealing with it.

Why are Medications Necessary?

You may require psychiatric medications depending on the nature of your mental disorder and on your clinical picture. For example, think about a person who has the potential to cause harm to themselves or to their environment or a person who cannot step out of their house due to their intense anxiety. Medications constitute a very important part of the treatment in such situations by reducing the risks and preparing the person for the therapy process. Contrary to common beliefs, when the treatment protocol is properly drawn up, the medications do not numb you or turn you into an emotionless robot.

Although it is true that some groups of medications have the potential to cause addiction, these medications are not preferred for treatment unless they are necessary. When preferred, such treatment is carried out under rigorous observation. Since the mechanisms of action of medications are different from each other, it is not appropriate to evaluate all medications in the same category. Unlike common beliefs, many psychiatric medications do not cause excessive weight gain. In addition, the effects of medications may also vary between individuals. Therefore, it is quite wrong to refuse treatment with a belief that 'a relative of mine used that medication but it did not work'.

What is Psychotherapy? 

Psychotherapy is a process applied individually or as a group, which is also publicly known as 'speech therapy'. Psychotherapy, however, is not a conversation during which the client talks all the time and the specialist is a passive listener. First of all, psychotherapy is establishing a relationship. A relationship of mutual trust, respect, empathy and acceptance should be established between the specialist and the client. Regardless of the experience of the technique used or the experience of the specialist, the lack of a qualified relationship negatively affects success of treatment. For this reason, it is very important that you feel comfortable in the therapy room and share your negative feelings with your therapist.

Initial interviews can cause you to have difficulty in opening yourself. This is normal. In the end, you will disclose information you even refuse to confess to yourself to someone you don't know at all. However, you should give yourself a chance to think that the person opposite is an expert who is ready to understand you and to reflect you, rather than to judge you. 

The therapy process is based on mutual cooperation and personalized. Working together with your therapist in line with your needs, you create a road map and periodically review the effectiveness of the process. Psychotherapy is actually a process of discovery, a journey to the self. Your therapist is there to guide you on this journey.

Another point is that you should have realistic expectations for therapy. Nobody in that room will touch you with a magic wand or noone will take decisions and responsibilities on your behalf. You do this yourself with the support of your therapist and internalize them. So you grow and become integrated. And finally, psychotherapy demands work. You have to spend your time, your material resources and your mental energy. However, it is definitely worth it, considering that the best investment in life is the investment made by the person to themselves.

How will I Trust the Specialist?

The relationship of trust develops and matures over time. Of course, in the first place you may have questions about trust and confidentiality. As per ethical principles, mental health professionals cannot share your information with third parties. They cannot even inform your relatives without your consent and knowledge. However, there are exceptional cases. It is necessary for wellbeing of the client and one of the duties of the specialist to provide information to necessary persons and institutions if there is a risk that the person may harm themselves or someone else or in the case of children and adolescents, especially in forensic cases.

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