Frequently asked questions

Do you treat ADD or ADHD?

We treat ADD and ADHD which is a neurobiologically-based developmental disability estimated to affect between 3-5% of the school age population. Unfortunately, no simple test exists to determine if a child has this disorder. Diagnosing ADD and ADHD is complicated. An accurate diagnosis requires an assessment conducted by a well-trained professional. As parents, the more you know, the more you can help your child to succeed. PERMA uses the specified criteria to diagnosis and treat ADD and ADHD.

Do you treat adult ADHD?

Yes, We treat ADD and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) for children as well as Adults.

What is the difference between a psychiatrist and psychologist?

A psychiatrist is a medical doctor (MD or DO) who can do a medical/Psychiatric evaluation, provide various psychotherapies and prescribe medications. Psychologists are able to provide diagnostic evaluations, psychological testing and provide psychotherapy, but they cannot prescribe medications. They have not gone to medical school or completed a medical residency program.

Are there specialist psychiatrists?

Psychiatrists treat a broad range of any and all mental health issues. Some have special training in different fields such as Child and Adolescent Psychiatry or Forensic Psychiatry. At PERMA, we are qualified and trained in treating nearly all forms of mental illness with all ages--having a broad training and fellowship background. We enjoy treating all ages as well as challenging problems such as addictions, somatic symptom disorders, eating disorders and personality disorders.

What will the psychiatrist ask me?

The psychiatrist will ask you about your medical and mental health history as well as your current symptoms. At PERMA, we follow the Bio-Psycho-Social approach in order to take into account the various factors that may be contributing to mental health problems or symptoms including Biological, Psychological and Social factors.

What should I ask them?

We are here to listen. Feel free to ask any questions you would like. Many patients have questions about diagnostic considerations as well as treatment options including therapy or possibly medication.

Why do people see a child psychologist?

A child psychiatrist who has had special training in a Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship has experience in specialized considerations in working with younger patients. They are trained both in-patient as well as out-patient settings in psychotherapy, diagnosis and psychopharmacology for children and adolescence.

When do I know my problems are severe enough to see someone?

Whenever you notice that your mental health may be interfering with your social or occupational functioning--either preventing you from functioning or causing you to not be able to function as well as you would otherwise, it is a great idea to seek an evaluation at least in order to learn about all of the various treatment options. Help is here.

If I see a psychologist or psychiatrist, does that mean I'm crazy?

The majority of people struggle with mental health symptoms at least once or twice during their life. Even for seemingly mild symptoms, remarkable help is available.

What causes mental illness?

Mental illness may be caused by genetic / biologic factors, psychologic factors or significant stress from our social situations. Often times how we were raised by our parents and the attachments we had from early in life can cause significant problems in our life. Other factors involve traumatic experiences such as physical or sexual abuse which can induce a significant post-traumatic stress disorder or anxiety condition otherwise.

What is the difference between autism, Aspergers, and PDD?

Your provider will be happy to address these questions with you depending on the specific case involving yourself, a loved one and/or your child.

Are there treatments available for mental health disorders that do not involve medication?

Absolutely. PERMA specializes in a variety of non-pharmalogical approaches including therapy, evaluation for procedures, supplements or other modalities depending on your preference and values.

Do I have to take this medication for the rest of my life?

Often times, medication is not needed. In cases that medication has been helpful, it may not be needed forever. Your provider will be happy to discuss all of the factors to consider in your case so that you may make the best informed decision for your treatment.

What is a chemical imbalance?

A chemical imbalance commonly refers to a biological or genetic based root which results in mental health problems. The neurotransmitters and various mechanisms in the brain are quite complicated, and your provider will be happy to answer any questions or curiosities you may have about how it all works.