The last 18 months have been a stressful time for all of us, especially residents of Louisiana. 2020 and 2021 have brought a host of new challenges that many of us were unsure how to face. With the COVID-19 pandemic surging, and in the wake of Hurricane Ida, more and more people are struggling with their mental health. This has led many to wonder if they require a mental health check.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, residents of Louisiana have been hit especially hard since the pandemic began. Since 2019, 21.2% of people in Louisiana have reported having symptoms of a mental illness. Depression and anxiety were the two most commonly reported mental illnesses, which accounted for nearly 40% of all adults with symptoms.
It’s not just mental illness that has spiked in Louisiana. Substance abuse has also increased dramatically since the start of the pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that nearly 13% of U.S adults started or increased substance use. For the people of Louisiana, this has resulted in a large number of co-occurring mental health conditions.
With thousands of people struggling with their mental wellness, many have started to wonder, what does it mean to be mentally healthy? A mental health check can be a great way to determine whether or not you are struggling with a mental illness. Below is everything you need to know about mental health checks, and where you can get one in Baton Rouge.
What Is a Mental Health Check?
A mental health check, also known as a mental health test, is an exam on both your emotional and mental health. Typically, a mental health check is given by a professional like a primary care doctor, psychologist, or psychiatrist. During the exam, the provider will screen for a variety of different mental illnesses and help determine what type of treatment is best for you.
There are many different aspects of mental health. As a result, there is not a singular, one size fits all mental health check. To successfully screen for mental illness, a mental health check may involve several different types of examinations. Those evaluations can include things like simple physical exams, to more in-depth laboratory tests to rule out physical conditions that may present as mental illness.
People often seek out a mental health test after they experience psychological, emotional, or behavioral symptoms. A mental health check may also be requested due to problems at school or work, or in the case of someone who has been arrested for crimes such as drunk driving.
What Does a Mental Health Test Screen For?
The goal of a mental health check is to screen for potential chronic mental illness. There are many different components of mental health, such as cognitive health, emotional health, and behavioral health. All of these are examined during a mental health check to rule out or determine a diagnosis.
Current mental health issues that a mental health check can screen for include:
- Depression and Mood Disorders
- Anxiety Disorders
- Eating Disorders
- Substance Use Disorders
- Bipolar Disorder
- Schizophrenia and Other Psychotic Disorders
If you believe that you or someone you know needs a mental health check, you may be wondering what to expect. Below is a simple survey that you can use to determine whether or not you may need mental health support.
Do I Need a Mental Health Evaluation?
Many people who are experiencing tough times may wonder if they need a mental health check. Asking for help can be difficult, but prioritizing your mental health is important. A mental health check doesn’t have to be difficult. Most mental health checks can be done in a matter of minutes, and can sometimes be done via virtual appointments.
That said, it can still be difficult to determine whether or not you may need a mental health check. Below is a list of questions that can help you determine whether or not mental health support is right for you.
- Have you recently experienced a stressful or traumatic event that has impacted you significantly? Examples may include being the victim of armed assault, witnessing a tragedy happen to someone else, surviving a sexual assault, or living through a natural disaster.
- Have you experienced a week or longer of lower-than-usual interest in activities you typically enjoy?
- Do you ever have feelings of anxiety or discomfort around others?
- Have you ever experienced an “attack” of fear, anxiety, or panic?
- Over the last week, have you noticed any changes in your eating habits?
- Have you noticed any recent changes in your sleep patterns?
- Do you have frequent feelings of hopelessness or helplessness?
- Do you feel as though your moods and feelings are out of your control?
- Have you recently noticed you were unable to focus at work or school?
- Have you recently noticed a decline in your social life? Are you withdrawing from friends or family?
If you answered yes to four or more of these, it could indicate that you need mental health support. It’s important to follow up with a mental health professional if you believe you are suffering from a mental illness. If you require a mental health check, Baton Rouge Behavioral Hospital is here to help.
Mental Health Services in Baton Rouge, Louisiana
If you or a loved one is suffering from the symptoms of mental illness, it may be time for a mental health check. At Baton Rouge Behavioral Hospital, we’re ready to help you take that first step towards recovery. We offer our patients a wide range of treatment options that can help them overcome any mental illness they may be suffering from.
Our adult psychiatric program provides intensive treatment for adults dealing with mental illness. That starts with a mental health check. When you arrive at Baton Rouge Behavioral Hospital, our treatment staff will walk you through a complete, comprehensive mental health check to determine what your symptoms may be caused by.
Once your mental health check is complete, our staff can help craft a treatment plan that is specific to your needs. These treatment options will help set you on the path to mental health recovery. Some of our treatment options for mental illness include:
- Group/individual therapy
- Dual diagnosis treatment if a substance use disorder is present
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Medication management
- Recreational therapy
- Discharge planning
If you need a mental health check, Baton Rouge Behavioral Hospital is here to help. We understand that asking for help with mental illness can be tough, but no one has to suffer alone. When you’re ready to start your journey to recovery, give us a call at 225-300-8470. You can also contact us online using our confidential contact form. Whichever way you choose to reach out, we’ll be ready to assist you.