Although every kind of job in the medical field is noteworthy, being a psychiatrist is exceptionally fulfilling. The reason is that neurosurgeons or orthopedists can at least look at X-rays and MRIs to see the condition of their patients. But when you are dealing with a person’s mental health, there are so many factors to think about that often go beyond the physical level.
Every patient that enters the psychiatrist’s office, therefore, requires his or her 100% attention. You can’t rely on machines to identify and treat the problem on a regular basis. After all, some individuals just want someone to hear them out, while a few people need actual medication to recover.
Nevertheless, to become a better psychiatrist for your patients, you should remember the medical etiquette guidelines too.
Rule #1: Stay Honest
When you’re trying to assist an individual with a mental disorder, you can’t be patronizing. A lot of psychiatric diseases, frankly speaking, have no definite cure at this time. It would be difficult for patients to accept later that they still have the same issues if you offered them false promises in the beginning.
The noblest thing you can do is diagnose the illness and discuss it with the person appropriately. Show them every treatment option out there as well and recommend the best one based on your assessments.
Rule #2: Protect Patients’ Privacy
Mental health patients are extra fragile compared to the ones with physical conditions. Some of them hardly have a grasp of reality, while others have very low self-esteem. Any detail regarding the illness that leaks out in public, for that reason, can pull them further down the abyss.
To avoid that, you should keep all your files safe. In case you are conventional, ascertain that the patients’ records are inaccessible to anyone who enters the clinic. If you maintain them digitally, ensure that your computer won’t get hacked. Moreover, don’t speak to other people about the individual’s condition unless they are their friends or close relatives.
Rule #3: Remain Approachable
Imagine the struggles faced by the person you’re about to treat before contacting you. The symptoms of whatever mental disorder they may have can undoubtedly incapacitate them. There may also be individuals around them who belittle their issues. Not to mention, they probably think of the stigma that it’s embarrassing to be seen coming in and out of a psychiatric facility even just for consultation purposes.
Since the person decides to forget all of that in hopes of getting better, you can start helping by being friendly from the get-go. This way, they will ideally warm up to you and speak of their problems immediately.
Rule #4: Be Good To Everyone
The patients that visit a psychiatrist’s clinic are typically more sensitive about their surrounds than others. Hence, they may notice in an instant if you’re only polite to them but not to your staff. Seeing that will most likely prevent them from going to your office again as you’ll appear mean and very business-like – the two characteristics that disgust folks with troubled minds.
Rule #5: Continue Learning
The fact that you graduated from med school with honors merely entails that you are a smart cookie. It isn’t a reason, however, to stop studying new principles and advancements concerning mental health.
After all, time already proved that electrocuting people or pumping them with drugs don’t have positive effects on patients. A popular treatment now is psychotherapy, which involves talking someone out of the psychiatric disorder and helping them live a healthy life. Despite that, remember that scientists can develop a more advanced method anytime in the future, so you should always continue learning.