March 23, 2020
Life is fragile. Even more so when you have a mental health issue or substance use or both. This is true especially due to the fact that your brain is the control center for your body, so if it is not functioning correctly, you have no internal way of knowing if you need help or how much help you need. Yet your friends and family don’t know what is going on inside of your head, they can only see the behaviors on the outside. It can be really difficult to put everything together and determine when it is time to ask for help. You might have a hundred questions spinning in your head, including one of the most important questions: Do you need to be hospitalized?
Types of Treatment
When you have mental health or substance abuse issues, there are a number of different treatment options ranging from talk therapy, a psychiatrist, outpatient treatment, residential treatment, all the way to hospitalization. The earlier you start to ask yourself the right questions and look at which treatment options there are, the more choices and flexibility you will have regarding which type of treatment you receive.
Again, when your mind is not functioning properly, you may not get to be the best judge of what your needs are. Your choices of treatment need to match up with what everyone sees happening on the outside, too. So early intervention leaves you with the most power and control over your treatment destiny.
Questions to Ask Yourself
Each person is unique, and when in doubt, you should always seek proper medical care immediately. These are a few of the questions you can consider asking yourself when you are considering treatment.
• Am I in danger of harming myself or others?
• Am I unaware of where I am and what I am doing?
• Am I feeling emotionally out of control and unsure of what I will do next?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, stop and go to the hospital. Your safety is the highest priority.
If your answers were all no, then ask yourself a few questions such as the following to see if maybe outpatient treatment is a better option for you right now:
• Are my symptoms persistent, like for more than three or four weeks?
• Are my symptoms and behaviors interfering with work or school or family?
• Is my mood a lot higher, lower, or just more extreme than usual?
• Have my symptoms caused me to miss school, work, family, or social events?
• Do I need help to feel in control of my moods, emotions, and behaviors again?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may be a good candidate for an outpatient treatment. Outpatient treatments allow you to sleep in your own bed at night, often still attending school and being able to see your friends and family, while still giving you the treatment you need to be healthy and functioning again.
People to Trust
Your brain may be telling you “Trust no one.” Unfortunately, that may be one of the signs that you are going to have to turn over your control and trust everyone. Ideally, before you get to that point, you take good look around you and find family members, friends, teachers or counselors at school or in your community, doctors, therapists, clergy members or other people from church, neighbors, etc. Who are the people amongst them that you trust to help you? Who are the people you can go to and confide in? Who are the people you trust to make decisions for your mental or physical health? Who are the people you trust with your life? Make a list. Star the people in your contacts on your phone, or mark them in a way that you know that if you are in trouble, they are the first people to call. Know the people in your life who can help you and in whom you can put your trust in to help you if your mental health does not allow you to advocate for yourself.
The earlier that you recognize that you need help, the more flexibility that you will have in choosing your treatment. With all of your choices from therapy up through outpatient treatment, you have more control over your treatment and more participation in the decision-making process for treatment of your mental health and substance use. However, residential and hospital inpatient options are more restrictive, and you will have less control over the decisions which are made for you. Do you need to be hospitalized? If there is any doubt, check with a medical professional immediately. Check in with the people you trust, and be completely honest with them about all of your symptoms. After all, it is your life. However, if you are able to recognize symptoms and behaviors earlier, you can take advantage of early intervention. This will give you more choices for your treatment options, and allow you to advocate for yourself the best ways to help you be healthy. You can take control back of your life by asking the important questions earlier, and allowing you choose your treatment destiny. Be vigilant about your mental health and give yourself freedom of choice.
Practice early intervention. Call Potomac Programs 1-855-809-0409 today. Find the perfect outpatient treatment that will keep you out of the hospital and in control.