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It's not always clear when the right time is to get outside help, but if you are considering whether a psychiatrist might be able to help your child and would like to speak to one of our Child and Adolescent clinical advisers first, then call us on 020 3761 7026 to get their advice.
If you choose to see one of our child and adolescent psychiatrists you can be confident that you are seeing a fully qualified consultant psychiatrist with years of experience working with young people. All our clinicians have had rigorous background checks, including full DBS clearances and references. We want you and your child to see a clinician you feel comfortable with, so we carefully interview our Partners to ensure they are caring and passionate about helping people get better.
Many people who call us aren’t sure what type of support their child needs. Don’t worry about that, you can just call us and explain what has been going on and we’ll advise you what we think will be most helpful for you and your family. Our telephones are answered by assistant psychologists who are all experienced in helping our clients.
Parental Attendance – Parents of children under the age of 18 are asked to attend the assessment as well. The consultant will want to speak to you about your child’s history and current health, but may also want some time alone with your child. This is so they can assess behaviour without parental influence and is nothing to be worried about. We will let you know what to expect in your appointment when you book.
Appointment length - The standard appointment is between 60 and 120 minutes long and this is usually long enough to reach a conclusion. Assessments for certain conditions and those with very complex situations may need extra time, we’ll discuss with you if we think a longer appointment might be helpful.
Nerves - It’s natural for you and your child to feel a bit apprehensive before the assessment, but rest assured we select all our clinicians based on their expertise and their ability to make clients feel at ease, so don’t worry, they will look after you.
Take notes - Your psychiatrist will be sent the information we take over the telephone when you book your appointment, but you may wish to make a note of any questions or issues you have to make sure you feel you have covered all your concerns. If your child is nervous about talking to a stranger, they may find it helpful to bring notes or drawings of how they are feeling to the assessment session; the psychiatrist can then read this with them.
Assessment report – Following your appointment, you will be sent a full psychiatric report within 2 weeks, depending on how quickly we receive responses to any questionnaires needed (sometimes your child’s school will be asked to complete a questionnaire so the Psychiatrist can understand more about their school life). The report will detail a diagnosis, where one is clear, and any treatment recommendations.
Prescriptions - If the Psychiatrist recommends a medication in the report, then you can ask your NHS GP if they will be willing to prescribe it. In our experience, your GP will be likely to prescribe in most circumstances upon receipt of your Psychiatrist’s report, although they will often refuse to prescribe more expensive medications such as those for ADHD.
Child and adolescent psychiatrists can help your child with a wide variety of mental health issues and will be able to diagnose conditions, as well as advise on treatment plans.
A psychiatrist is a medically trained professional; they will have completed their medical training, followed by specialist higher training in psychiatry. Following completion of their higher training, they will go on to become Consultant grade, which usually takes at least 10 years. Because they have completed medical training they are able to prescribe medication, which psychologists and psychotherapists cannot.
Common conditions that a child and adolescent psychiatrist can diagnose are:
Following your appointment with the psychiatrist, your child may be recommended to see a Psychologist or Psychotherapist for further treatment. We can help arrange this treatment privately or you may wish to be treated by the NHS. Hyperlink to child and adolescent psychology and psychotherapy.
Speak with someone today about booking a private psychiatric assessment on 020 3761 7026. We're here and always happy to help.