How does Talkiatry treat PTSD?
The first step in treating PTSD is getting a clinical diagnosis from a qualified mental healthcare professional. Sadly, many people do not take this critical step. Doctors don’t know why some people develop PTSD and others don’t, but they do know that it’s not your fault if you develop the condition.
Many treatment options exist to dramatically improve your quality of life. Traumatic psychological wounds and distressing memories are often treated with a combination of talk therapy and medication management.
With Talkiatry, you can see a psychiatrist from the comfort of your couch and you can schedule your first appointment in a matter of days.
Here’s what to expect in your first visit:
Evaluation: During your first visit with a Talkiatry psychiatrist, you’ll get to meet each other and answer questions about your current symptoms, personal history, medical history, and mental health goals. Your psychiatrist will listen to what you're going through and make sure that virtual care at Talkiatry is the best fit for you.
Diagnosis: Based on the information you’ve shared, your psychiatrist will be able to provide a diagnosis of your condition, if you have one. Getting a diagnosis can feel scary, but it can also feel validating to finally put a name to what you've been experiencing. Your psychiatrist will help you navigate any emotions that come up and work with you on a path to move forward.
Treatment plan: You’ll collaborate with your psychiatrist on the best way to manage your symptoms. If medication is appropriate, you’ll discuss your options, including the benefits and potential side effects of each medication. Your psychiatrist will provide supportive therapy throughout your session, and may also recommend working with one of our therapists. Our therapists partner with our psychiatrists to provide collaborative care.
To get started, take our free online assessment
, to see if Talkiatry is right for you and get matched with a psychiatrist.
Your psychiatrist may recommend prescription medication to help manage the symptoms of PTSD. Medications are second-line treatment for PTSD, but they can help with stabilizing mood, reducing anxiety, and decreasing nightmares. The most common type of medications prescribed for PTSD are antidepressants, which may help control many of the symptoms of the condition, including sadness, worry, fear, anger, or numbness.
- Antidepressants like SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) and SNRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors) increase the levels of specific chemicals in the brain that help regulate mood.
These medications can sometimes take several weeks to reach full effectiveness. Even then, if you don’t respond to one SSRI or SNRI, you may respond to another, which is why it’s so important to work with a qualified healthcare professional who can respond to your specific situation.
Depending on your symptoms, your psychiatrist may also recommend other medications, including anti-anxiety medications or insomnia medications, which can help with things like agitation and sleep problems.
The most effective PTSD treatment plans typically involve a combination of medication management and therapy. Your Talkiatry psychiatrist may recommend working with a therapist, who can offer many supportive therapies including:
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- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a targeted therapy technique that aims to help you understand your feelings, process the traumatic event, and change negative thinking patterns around the traumatic event.
- Exposure therapy, a form of therapy that aims to help you relive aspects of the traumatic event in a safe environment to help desensitize you to it. Doing so can break avoidance and fear patterns around the traumatic event.
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), a therapy technique that combines exposure therapy with a series of guided eye movements. This has been shown to help you better process the traumatic memory and change how you react to it.