Consultations may involve a single meeting or a few meetings. Some common reasons to seek consultations include:
· * Treatment planning and recommendations
· * Guidance for accessing mental health services
· * Parenting support
· * Coping with a loved one’s mental illness
Navigating the mental health world can be overwhelming and daunting. When you initially learn you or your loved one has a mental illness or needs psychological help, it can be extremely challenging to know what kind of treatment to seek and how to start the process. My role in the process can be to educate you on the symptoms experienced and to demystify the world of mental health services. I can share what treatment options are available and which treatments would best target the presenting symptoms and problems to make change effectively. I help individuals and families know what to expect, how to best communicate their needs to treatment providers and how to advocate for oneself or a loved one. Treatment options such as private therapists and psychiatrists, group therapy, support groups, community mental health centers, day treatment, inpatient programs and research programs can be explained and discussed. Through my role as outreach director and community educator for the CAPPS and CHAMP programs at UCLA for many years, I gained much expertise in the range of mental health services offered in the Southern California area.
Consultations can be extremely useful to help family members cope with a loved one’s new or ongoing mental illness. Understanding the illness and its course and well as learning to shift expectations and cope with feelings of grief and loss are imperative to a successful adjustment. I can help you learn to parent a young person struggling with symptoms and focus on other critical nuances such as learning what is a true symptom versus what is intentional behavior. As relevant, we also discuss what can be done differently at home and at school or work to best protect the individual suffering from symptoms.