by Dr. Devin Shoquist

Q: How do I know who will be the best mental health provider for me?

A: Finding a good mental health provider that will be a good fit for you can be very challenging sometimes. Yet there are ways that you can narrow down your search and additionally make an informed decision.

The first thing to figure out is what level of expertise you think you will need. There are counselors with master’s degrees, psychologists with PhD’s, and psychiatrists with MD’s. The biggest difference will be whether you feel that medications may be helpful (psychiatrists), and how much formal training your provider will have.

The second piece, and maybe the most important, is to get a sense of how you will personally “click” with the provider. The best way to figure this out is to ask friends / family, look online at a provider’s website, and even talk to the provider by phone and ask questions about the way they approach treatment.

As with any important decision, if you take the time to do a little homework you will more likely be pleased with the end result and get the most benefit out of it. Good luck!

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