Psychiatry is a unique field within the medical profession. Medical doctors take a great deal of time and effort to earn their M.D. and then continue their education with the results of earning an expertise as a psychiatrist. Psychiatrists dedicate their professional careers to understanding how a person behaves by using psychological training as well as their medical training. There are differences between a psychiatrist, a medical doctor, and a psychologist. A medical doctor’s specialization involves physical ailments. A psychologist’s specialization involves behaviors, and a psychiatrist is a blend of the two health fields.
A Distinguished Fellow, Dr. Daniel Amen is a double-board certified psychiatric professional. He has spent his career learning all he can about the human brain; holding a database of close to 90,000 brain scans from citizens around the world. His research on athletes, particularly football players, has shown the damage that occurs and potential recovery from that damage. Dr. Amen’s other accomplishments include: television producer and best-selling author, and being awarded nine separate times as a New York Times best-selling author. He works closely with Pastor Rick Warren and Dr. Mark Hyman; providing a year-long program that involves integration of religion to improve the health of the world, called “The Daniel Plan“. Dr. Amen has been seen on television and been in many movies, sharing his expertise and knowledge with others. He might tell you that his greatest accomplishment is his wife, Tana and his four children and many grandchildren.
There is a lot of unnecessary mystery and stigma involved in psychiatry. Medical health issues are usually something that a patient can understand, but the mind and how it works is difficult to understand. Individuals who have mental health issues are less likely to seek help, and they feel stigmatized, or afraid, to visit a psychiatrist.
Psychiatry tries to blend the nuances of physiology and neurology in order to explain abnormal behaviors. Individuals who suffer the symptoms of schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, many depressive, and other disorders would benefit from psychiatrists like Dr. Amen. They use their skills to scan brains, check neurological malfunctions, and prescribe medications to alleviate many symptoms that have caused their patients to become disabled.
Visiting a psychiatrist does not indicate that a person is weak. It indicates that they understand their personal needs and seek out help to overcome their mental health problems. In many cases the troubles are not dire, and do not require long-term counseling, but just an understanding professional who has the knowledge and tools required to help a patient to improve their lifestyle. Anyone who finds that their life is disrupted by their own personal ‘demons’ would likely benefit from a visit to a psychiatrist.