What Happens During A Mental Health Assessment?

Mental health is not as straightforward as many people think. For this reason, mental health assessments are often needed to provide a full picture of a situation. These assessments may be used to ensure somebody is not a risk to themselves or others, and they can be chosen by a client or ordered by a court, for example.

No matter why you need a mental health assessment, you might wonder exactly what to expect. Here's what you need to know.

Mental Health Assessments Include Interviews

An interview is a common portion of an assessment. The professional will ask you some questions to gain a general understanding of your mood and how you present yourself.

These questions will also delve into potential symptoms of mental health conditions. The questions asked may pertain to the purpose of the assessment to ensure that all bases are covered. The initial questions provide a general idea of where the professional may need to focus.

Mental Health Assessments May Include a Physical Exam

A physical exam can provide information to the professional about your mental health and other symptoms that might appear invisible at first. Some symptoms could also be linked to the body, which means that the professional might need to perform specific physical exams.

This part of the assessment may also include taking stock of your family's medical and mental health history. It also involves taking a look at any medications you are currently taking.

Mental Health Assessments May Include Lab Testing

Lab testing, which could include imaging or blood tests, can also provide insight for your assessment. Urine samples can also provide additional insight for professionals to determine behavioral components.

Mental Health Assessments May Involve Other Tests

It's also important to note that the professional may decide to administer a variety of other tests. Verbal and written tests can help the professional determine what may be the cause of behavioral concerns.

Assessment tools, like these tests, can determine if you possess traits associated with depression, substance abuse, bipolar disorder, and anxiety disorder. These tools can also determine your risk of suicide and determine if you have been impacted by trauma.

Mental Health Assessments Provide Answers

While a mental health assessment may not necessarily provide you with a diagnosis, it can certainly help you understand the situation on another level. Speak with a professional today to see if a mental health assessment is right for your situation.