Psychiatrists in McLean, VA

Photo of Dr. Clair Oja, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in McLean, VA
Dr. Clair Oja
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHP
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22102
Dr. Clair Oja is a certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and Family Nurse Practitioner. She prescribes Wegovy, Mounjaro, Ozempic, Spravato, and Ketamine. Dr. Oja completed her doctorate focusing on mental health and the lack of access to mental health care. For the past thirteen years, she has treated a variety of mental health disorders in a family practice setting. Dr. Oja is passionate about providing quality, compassionate, and comprehensive mental health services to pediatric and adult populations. Dr.
Dr. Clair Oja is a certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and Family Nurse Practitioner. She prescribes Wegovy, Mounjaro, Ozempic, Spravato, and Ketamine. Dr. Oja completed her doctorate focusing on mental health and the lack of access to mental health care. For the past thirteen years, she has treated a variety of mental health disorders in a family practice setting. Dr. Oja is passionate about providing quality, compassionate, and comprehensive mental health services to pediatric and adult populations. Dr.
(571) 765-2285 View (571) 765-2285
Photo of Bobby W Nelson, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Bobby W Nelson
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101
None of us was prepared for a time like this. We were raised with expectations of a predictable environment and future. These current stressors markedly strain the coping skills that we were taught or saw demonstrated in our childhood. Isolation and loneliness are leading stressors. As social creatures, to now be treated as "The Other" and avoided as though we were not there, often increases resentment,anxiety,depression and relationship dysfunction. To borrow from William James, we may experience it as "fiendish punishment". Effective communication can reduce the pain of isolation and powerlessness.
None of us was prepared for a time like this. We were raised with expectations of a predictable environment and future. These current stressors markedly strain the coping skills that we were taught or saw demonstrated in our childhood. Isolation and loneliness are leading stressors. As social creatures, to now be treated as "The Other" and avoided as though we were not there, often increases resentment,anxiety,depression and relationship dysfunction. To borrow from William James, we may experience it as "fiendish punishment". Effective communication can reduce the pain of isolation and powerlessness.
(703) 386-7026 View (703) 386-7026
Photo of Dr. Richard K. Kim, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Dr. Richard K. Kim
Psychiatrist, MD, FAPA
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101
Dr. Kim is an experienced board-certified psychiatrist who provides compassionate, personal care through counseling and medication management. He received his BA with Honors in the Philosophy of Science and Medicine from the University of Chicago, his MD from the University of Illinois, and his psychiatry residency at the Loyola University Medical Center where he was Chief Resident. Dr. Kim has expertise in both psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, and telemedicine. Dr. Kim is offers online appointments.
Dr. Kim is an experienced board-certified psychiatrist who provides compassionate, personal care through counseling and medication management. He received his BA with Honors in the Philosophy of Science and Medicine from the University of Chicago, his MD from the University of Illinois, and his psychiatry residency at the Loyola University Medical Center where he was Chief Resident. Dr. Kim has expertise in both psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, and telemedicine. Dr. Kim is offers online appointments.
(703) 940-9921 View (703) 940-9921
Photo of Alexandru Serghi, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Alexandru Serghi
Psychiatrist, MD, FAPA
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
Dr Serghi’s approach to the medical act is built around the central concept of biological, psychological and social determinants to human illness. The core principle of his practice is based on the application of the scientific method to the most current medical evidence for both the diagnosis and the treatment of brain disorders. In addition to expertise in neuropsychiatric diagnoses, Dr Serghi offers both brief psychotherapeutic interventions as well as long term psychodynamic psychotherapy, in combination with medication treatment only if indicated, within the absolute privacy and comfort of the patient-doctor therapeutic space.
Dr Serghi’s approach to the medical act is built around the central concept of biological, psychological and social determinants to human illness. The core principle of his practice is based on the application of the scientific method to the most current medical evidence for both the diagnosis and the treatment of brain disorders. In addition to expertise in neuropsychiatric diagnoses, Dr Serghi offers both brief psychotherapeutic interventions as well as long term psychodynamic psychotherapy, in combination with medication treatment only if indicated, within the absolute privacy and comfort of the patient-doctor therapeutic space.
(571) 620-6743 View (571) 620-6743
Photo of Kalkidan Ayalew, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in McLean, VA
Kalkidan Ayalew
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101
In my practice, empathy and compassion are at the forefront. I believe that effective mental health treatment is not a one-size-fits-all solution; it’s a journey that requires understanding, patience, and a personalized approach. I am committed to delivering comprehensive care tailored to each individual, whether that involves medication management, psychotherapy, or a combination of both. I treat variety of conditions from ADHD to spectrum of anxiety disorders and mood problems. Trauma and autism spectrum are other areas of my focus.
In my practice, empathy and compassion are at the forefront. I believe that effective mental health treatment is not a one-size-fits-all solution; it’s a journey that requires understanding, patience, and a personalized approach. I am committed to delivering comprehensive care tailored to each individual, whether that involves medication management, psychotherapy, or a combination of both. I treat variety of conditions from ADHD to spectrum of anxiety disorders and mood problems. Trauma and autism spectrum are other areas of my focus.
(571) 556-9912 View (571) 556-9912
Photo of Marina Nesterenko, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Marina Nesterenko
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist, General Adult Psychiatrist NJ, NY, VA, FL ​ Dr. Marina Nesterenko finished Medical school in Kyiv, Ukraine, in 1997 and worked as a child psychiatrist in Ukraine. After relocation to the USA, she completed a Psychiatry Residency program at SUNY Upstate, followed by Child Fellowship in Syracuse, NY. Dr. Nesterenko is Board Certified in General Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Area of Interest: autism, aggression, developmental delay, ADHD, depression, mood disorder, bipolar disorder, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, and PTSD.
Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist, General Adult Psychiatrist NJ, NY, VA, FL ​ Dr. Marina Nesterenko finished Medical school in Kyiv, Ukraine, in 1997 and worked as a child psychiatrist in Ukraine. After relocation to the USA, she completed a Psychiatry Residency program at SUNY Upstate, followed by Child Fellowship in Syracuse, NY. Dr. Nesterenko is Board Certified in General Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Area of Interest: autism, aggression, developmental delay, ADHD, depression, mood disorder, bipolar disorder, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, and PTSD.
(941) 795-5922 View (941) 795-5922
Photo of Dr. Christopher Schubert, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Dr. Christopher Schubert
Psychiatrist, MD, BSE
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22102
Dr. Schubert MD is Board Certified in Psychiatry and has experience in and passion for treating a diverse patient population with particular interest in children (and young at heart) adults and professionals struggling with mental health issues. He has particular interests in ADHD, Anxiety/Depressive disorders, PTSD, Substance Use Disorders, eating disorders, and personality disorders with interpersonal relationship struggles. He takes particular pride in finding missed medical diagnoses with psychological issues related to chronic/acute medical illness, as these tend to be more rapidly cured.
Dr. Schubert MD is Board Certified in Psychiatry and has experience in and passion for treating a diverse patient population with particular interest in children (and young at heart) adults and professionals struggling with mental health issues. He has particular interests in ADHD, Anxiety/Depressive disorders, PTSD, Substance Use Disorders, eating disorders, and personality disorders with interpersonal relationship struggles. He takes particular pride in finding missed medical diagnoses with psychological issues related to chronic/acute medical illness, as these tend to be more rapidly cured.
(703) 839-0143 View (703) 839-0143
Photo of Susan Kinkead-Acree, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Susan Kinkead-Acree
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
As a holistic physician, I am committed to helping my patients achieve optimum mental and physical health. My treatment approach considers the interrelationships of body, mind, and spirit. In formulating a treatment plan, I work collaboratively with my patients to incorporate the most effective, evidence-based treatment options to meet their unique needs. These options may include psychotherapy and traditional medication management, as well as lifestyle modifications and complimentary treatment approaches.
As a holistic physician, I am committed to helping my patients achieve optimum mental and physical health. My treatment approach considers the interrelationships of body, mind, and spirit. In formulating a treatment plan, I work collaboratively with my patients to incorporate the most effective, evidence-based treatment options to meet their unique needs. These options may include psychotherapy and traditional medication management, as well as lifestyle modifications and complimentary treatment approaches.
(571) 200-4984 View (571) 200-4984
Photo of Natasha Olliver, Physician Assistant in McLean, VA
Natasha Olliver
Physician Assistant, PA-C, MS
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22102
My goal is to help my patients navigate the complicated process of getting help for mental health concerns. There are so many mental health professionals and we all do different things. While I focus on medication management, I am happy to discuss all reasonable alternatives. I strive to offer unbiased, non-judgmental, culturally competent psychiatric healthcare. I want to support you in managing your conditions in a way that allows you the best quality of life with the lowest amount of medication necessary. I also want to increase access to mental health services for those in more rural areas.
My goal is to help my patients navigate the complicated process of getting help for mental health concerns. There are so many mental health professionals and we all do different things. While I focus on medication management, I am happy to discuss all reasonable alternatives. I strive to offer unbiased, non-judgmental, culturally competent psychiatric healthcare. I want to support you in managing your conditions in a way that allows you the best quality of life with the lowest amount of medication necessary. I also want to increase access to mental health services for those in more rural areas.
(571) 556-3805 View (571) 556-3805
Photo of Ehsan Habibpour, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Ehsan Habibpour
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
4 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101
I'm a Child Psychiatrist, also trained in Adult Psychiatry. I can help whether you're a mature adult with problems rooted in your past, or whether you're concerned about one of your children experiencing stress or difficulty, especially adolescents. I have a deep grounding in how we're shaped into the adults we become. I'm familiar with the forces, positive and negative, that operate between children and the significant adults in their lives. I'm interested in and co-wrote a paper about the overlap of Culture and Ethnicity in emotional disturbances.
I'm a Child Psychiatrist, also trained in Adult Psychiatry. I can help whether you're a mature adult with problems rooted in your past, or whether you're concerned about one of your children experiencing stress or difficulty, especially adolescents. I have a deep grounding in how we're shaped into the adults we become. I'm familiar with the forces, positive and negative, that operate between children and the significant adults in their lives. I'm interested in and co-wrote a paper about the overlap of Culture and Ethnicity in emotional disturbances.
(703) 594-4308 View (703) 594-4308
Photo of Amanjot Kaur, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Amanjot Kaur
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22102
I am a Psychiatrist with dual training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry along with Adult Psychiatry. I specialize in treating mood and anxiety disorders, ADHD, behavioral problems and incorporate my knowledge of psychotherapy along with psychopharmacology in my treatment approach. I provide psychotherapy and medication management as indicated, often in combination with an emphasis on care that is interactive and customized to best meet the individual needs of the person. I assess my patient's needs and tailor my approach to address them. I closely work with families as a unit of assessment and also as a unit of treatment.
I am a Psychiatrist with dual training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry along with Adult Psychiatry. I specialize in treating mood and anxiety disorders, ADHD, behavioral problems and incorporate my knowledge of psychotherapy along with psychopharmacology in my treatment approach. I provide psychotherapy and medication management as indicated, often in combination with an emphasis on care that is interactive and customized to best meet the individual needs of the person. I assess my patient's needs and tailor my approach to address them. I closely work with families as a unit of assessment and also as a unit of treatment.
(571) 901-1573 View (571) 901-1573
Photo of Meghan Shank, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in McLean, VA
Meghan Shank
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
Meghan Shank is a board-certified Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. She has extensive inpatient and outpatient experience treating clients with a variety of mental health diagnoses, including mood, anxiety, and attention deficit disorders. She enjoys working alongside her adult clients to help them navigate life's challenges and achieve wellness. Meghan offers psychiatric medication management both virtually and in-person at Park Psychiatry's warm and inviting office located in McLean, VA.
Meghan Shank is a board-certified Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. She has extensive inpatient and outpatient experience treating clients with a variety of mental health diagnoses, including mood, anxiety, and attention deficit disorders. She enjoys working alongside her adult clients to help them navigate life's challenges and achieve wellness. Meghan offers psychiatric medication management both virtually and in-person at Park Psychiatry's warm and inviting office located in McLean, VA.
(571) 450-9851 View (571) 450-9851
Photo of McLean Neuropsychiatric Treatment Center, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
McLean Neuropsychiatric Treatment Center
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
More than thirty percent of people with depression do not respond to medication management and psychotherapy. In these cases, where it feels like hope is lost, we can help.
More than thirty percent of people with depression do not respond to medication management and psychotherapy. In these cases, where it feels like hope is lost, we can help.
(571) 200-4927 View (571) 200-4927
Photo of Madhu Bhatia, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Madhu Bhatia
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22102
I have more than 20 years of experience in treating Adults ,Adolescents and children.My goal of treatment is to help the patients become well adjusted emotionally and socially and entails a combination of cognitive therapy and psychopharmacology.My special interest is in treating patients with Mood disorders and Trauma
I have more than 20 years of experience in treating Adults ,Adolescents and children.My goal of treatment is to help the patients become well adjusted emotionally and socially and entails a combination of cognitive therapy and psychopharmacology.My special interest is in treating patients with Mood disorders and Trauma
(703) 810-3494 View (703) 810-3494
Photo of Seeta Patel, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Seeta Patel
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101  (Online Only)
Dr. Seeta Patel is a Harvard-trained, board-certified adult psychiatrist. She provides evidence-based medication management for adults (18 years and older). She specializes in treating anxiety, depression, and trauma related concerns. She works with clients from a variety of cultural backgrounds and have seen how trauma can cause lifelong suffering. We often do not reach out until aspects of our life have already been affected in a negative way - for instance, when our relationships have fallen apart, or when we have lost a job. Reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness, but rather it is a sign of strength.
Dr. Seeta Patel is a Harvard-trained, board-certified adult psychiatrist. She provides evidence-based medication management for adults (18 years and older). She specializes in treating anxiety, depression, and trauma related concerns. She works with clients from a variety of cultural backgrounds and have seen how trauma can cause lifelong suffering. We often do not reach out until aspects of our life have already been affected in a negative way - for instance, when our relationships have fallen apart, or when we have lost a job. Reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness, but rather it is a sign of strength.
(571) 474-3261 View (571) 474-3261
Photo of Dr. Fatima Noorani, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Dr. Fatima Noorani
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101
Not accepting new clients
Sometimes due to a diagnosis or circumstance, you may find yourself stuck, unable to perform, unhappy, or unfulfilled. I'm here to help you bounce back through treatments supported by scientific evidence, which may include medication, therapy, or both. Unlike many psychiatrists, I also offer psychotherapy. I collaborate with patients to integrate their life story, strengths, and values to support them in their unique journey toward personal growth and healing. While adults of all ages and backgrounds are welcome, I specialize in supporting multicultural and BIPOC clients, as well as pregnant and postpartum clients.
Sometimes due to a diagnosis or circumstance, you may find yourself stuck, unable to perform, unhappy, or unfulfilled. I'm here to help you bounce back through treatments supported by scientific evidence, which may include medication, therapy, or both. Unlike many psychiatrists, I also offer psychotherapy. I collaborate with patients to integrate their life story, strengths, and values to support them in their unique journey toward personal growth and healing. While adults of all ages and backgrounds are welcome, I specialize in supporting multicultural and BIPOC clients, as well as pregnant and postpartum clients.
(571) 946-2437 View (571) 946-2437
Photo of Sara M. Bahraini, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Sara M. Bahraini
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101
Not accepting new clients
I am a board-certified child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist, offering culturally-sensitive, trauma-informed, LGBT-inclusive and highly-individualized care to children, adolescents and young adults. I work with individuals to build treatment plans that play to their strengths, address everyday challenges and achieve their goals. I treat a range of concerns through a tailored combination of individual therapy and/or medications. My particular strengths and areas of interest include anxiety disorders, OCD, depression, ADHD, insomnia and gender dysphoria among many others.
I am a board-certified child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist, offering culturally-sensitive, trauma-informed, LGBT-inclusive and highly-individualized care to children, adolescents and young adults. I work with individuals to build treatment plans that play to their strengths, address everyday challenges and achieve their goals. I treat a range of concerns through a tailored combination of individual therapy and/or medications. My particular strengths and areas of interest include anxiety disorders, OCD, depression, ADHD, insomnia and gender dysphoria among many others.
(703) 936-7804 View (703) 936-7804
Eva Maria Theodosiadis
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
At Sound Body & Mind Psychiatric Services, we recognize that both emotional and physical factors contribute to the development of psychiatric symptoms. Genetics, environment and specific stressors or traumatic events can also play an important role. Finally, an individual's character, personality, temperament, and resilence all contribute to the clinical picture, and can shape the types of symptoms we see and the prognosis. No two individuals are exactly alike and therefore, no two individuals experience psychiatric symptoms in the exact same way. This is why we create a unique treatment plan to target your specific experience.
At Sound Body & Mind Psychiatric Services, we recognize that both emotional and physical factors contribute to the development of psychiatric symptoms. Genetics, environment and specific stressors or traumatic events can also play an important role. Finally, an individual's character, personality, temperament, and resilence all contribute to the clinical picture, and can shape the types of symptoms we see and the prognosis. No two individuals are exactly alike and therefore, no two individuals experience psychiatric symptoms in the exact same way. This is why we create a unique treatment plan to target your specific experience.
(571) 414-0538 View (571) 414-0538
Photo of Ella Peresechenski, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Ella Peresechenski
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
McLean, VA 22101
My name is Dr. Ella Peresechenski, and I attended New York University for an undergraduate degree in Biology, followed by a Master of Science degree in Nutrition Sciences from Columbia University. I then attended Eastern Virginia Medical School in my beautiful home state of Virginia, followed by Adult Psychiatry residency training at the University of Miami/Jackson Health System.
My name is Dr. Ella Peresechenski, and I attended New York University for an undergraduate degree in Biology, followed by a Master of Science degree in Nutrition Sciences from Columbia University. I then attended Eastern Virginia Medical School in my beautiful home state of Virginia, followed by Adult Psychiatry residency training at the University of Miami/Jackson Health System.
(703) 987-9877 View (703) 987-9877
Photo of Thomas J Pillion, Psychiatrist in McLean, VA
Thomas J Pillion
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
McLean, VA 22101  (Online Only)
If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, or problems with interpersonal relationships, I would like to help you to restore a sense of balance in your life. Using either medication or psychotherapy, we can work together toward identifying and removing the obstacles that interfere with living a more happy and satisfying life. I trained in general adult psychiatry at the University of North Carolina and received my MD from the University of Texas. I see primarily adults and am not taking new child or adolescent patients at this time.
If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, or problems with interpersonal relationships, I would like to help you to restore a sense of balance in your life. Using either medication or psychotherapy, we can work together toward identifying and removing the obstacles that interfere with living a more happy and satisfying life. I trained in general adult psychiatry at the University of North Carolina and received my MD from the University of Texas. I see primarily adults and am not taking new child or adolescent patients at this time.
(919) 344-0669 View (919) 344-0669

How does your Psychiatrist compare?

Number of Psychiatrists in McLean, VA

60+

Average cost per session

$250

Psychiatrists in McLean, VA who prioritize treating:

94% Depression
94% Anxiety
84% Medication Management
79% ADHD
79% Bipolar Disorder
77% Obsessive-Compulsive (OCD)
76% Trauma and PTSD

Average years in practice

12 Years

Top 3 insurances accepted

74% Cigna and Evernorth
67% BlueCross and BlueShield
63% UnitedHealthcare UHC | UBH

How Psychiatrists in McLean, VA see their clients

81% In Person and Online
19% Online Only

Gender breakdown

67% Female
33% Male
FAQs - About Psychiatrists and Psychiatric Nurses

How can I find a psychiatrist in McLean?

The Psychology Today Directory enables you to search specifically for psychiatrists, using the drop down provider menu in the navigation bar, by city or zip code, or by the name of the psychiatrist. Search results provide detailed profiles of professionals, including their treatment approach and areas of expertise. In addition, listings provide important information about each psychiatrist’s credentials, fees, payment options, and insurance affiliations. Directory users can select psychiatrists who meet an array of personally-desired criteria, such as familiarity with a specific community or condition.

What is the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist?

Psychiatrists are medical specialists who focus on understanding, diagnosing, and treating diseases of the brain and disorders of the mind and behavior. As physicians, psychiatrists are trained to recognize the often-subtle biological causes of mental disorders and to monitor the effects of mental disturbances on physical conditions, such as heart disease. Psychologists are especially attuned to the influence of early experience on development and behavior, emotional and cognitive processes, the nature of personality, and social functioning. They are also trained to deploy an array of psychological tests—IQ tests, personality tests, behavioral assessments—to gauge a person’s functioning.

What is a psychiatric nurse practitioner?

A psychiatric nurse practitioner, also known as a mental health nurse practitioner, is a registered nurse who completes advanced training in psychiatric care, earning either a master’s or doctoral degree in psychiatric nursing, and in the U.S., passes a national certification exam. Like psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners are trained to assess, diagnose, and treat mental health conditions. In some locales, psychiatric nurse practitioners can offer the full range of psychiatric care, including prescribing and managing medication. In other places, they must work in collaboration with a physician.

Is everyone in the Psychology Today Therapy Directory a licensed psychiatrist?

The Psychology Today directory lists providers who offer legitimate mental health services to the public, including psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and counselors. All psychiatrists listed in the directory have a valid license issued by the state(s) in which they practice and are certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Providers whose license or primary credential has been verified by Psychology Today are signified by a “Verified” symbol. Some individuals or organizations provide services for which their state or country does not offer licenses, such as pastoral counseling. They may be selectively included without the “Verified” seal.

Can a psychiatrist prescribe medication?

Psychiatrists are licensed medical doctors who are trained to recognize the many ways body processes affect the functioning of the brain and mind. As physicians, they can prescribe medication. Patients who are prescribed medications will typically need to continue to see a psychiatrist so that the effects of the medication can be monitored. For many psychiatric conditions, including common disorders such as anxiety and depression, the preferred treatment is combination therapy—medication accompanied by psychotherapy.

Do psychiatrists offer therapy?

Psychiatrists are generally trained in a number of treatment modalities, including psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy, and, increasingly, somatic therapies. Typically, psychiatrists make a diagnosis and determine a course of treatment based on chemical or biological factors, using lab tests, brain scans and physical and psychological evaluations. While psychotherapy may be used in the first session to aid in diagnosis, it is not typically utilized in subsequent visits. In fact, after the introductory session, most sessions with a psychiatrist may only be 15-20 minutes in length and are largely focused on medication management. Many psychiatrists who do not offer psychotherapy work collaboratively with psychologists and other mental health clinicians and can refer clients seeking talk therapy to those providers.

How do I know if I need a psychiatrist or a therapist?

It is not always easy to know which type of mental health practitioner to choose. Many people are unaware of the root of their mental or behavioral problem. One way many people learn which type of care is best for them is by seeing their primary care provider first. Depending on the nature and severity of the symptoms, the physician may review their medical history or perform medical tests to determine whether biological factors are involved before making a referral. It is not necessary for a person to know precisely what type of care they need in order to seek help. Many psychiatrists and psychologists refer clients to each other depending on client needs.

Do I need a referral to see a psychiatrist?

A referral to a psychiatrist is often not required. However, seeing your primary care physician first can be helpful and actually prove to be a shortcut to getting what you need. Your PCP may have a clear idea whether psychiatric help is needed and/or which kind of mental health care would be most beneficial and refer you to the right type of practitioner. For that reason alone, some psychiatrists require a referral. Further, many insurance plans require a referral from a PCP if they cover all of part of the cost of seeing a specialist; if, however, you are paying out of pocket, you may not need a referral. In any case, a referral may speed the process of securing an appointment with a psychiatrist, especially in areas where there is a shortage of mental health specialists and new patients face long waits for appointments.