The medical specialty of psychiatry focuses on studying, diagnosing, treating, and preventing different types of mental disorders. Psychoactive drugs that affect brain functioning and psychotherapy sessions designed to increase the well-being of the patient are the combined treatment that is most commonly recommended. Integrative psychiatry takes a different approach to treatment that is considered more holistic.
Treatments Prescribed by an Integrative Psychiatrist
Psychiatrists who take the integrative approach to treatment recommend both conventional therapies and complementary treatments that increase patient self-awareness and self-care. Changes in diet or exercise routines, and exercises that center the mind and body that promotes relaxation are several common treatments. Nutritional supplements are also a common approach in integrative psychiatry. An integrative psychiatrist may also recommend mindfulness meditation, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing, or guided imagery activities that engage the mind in the healing process.
Potential Patients for Integrative Psychiatry
Integrative psychiatry is being explored for its beneficial treatment of patients who wish to assume responsibility for their well-being by addressing how their emotions, social interactions, and lifestyle affect their health. Outcomes for patients who are intolerant of or who do not have the optimal response to conventional psychiatric treatments are also being studied. Even individuals suffering from anxiety, depression, phobias, post-traumatic stress disorders, and other serious mental disorders may benefit from this approach.
Cranial electrostimulation therapy (CES) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) are non-invasive non-drug approaches that can be used with patients suffering from psychiatric disorders. Administered as outpatient procedures, they tend not to cause medication-type side effects and may have only a few transient side effects including mild scalp or ear discomfort.