NeuroPsych Wellness Center is a Fairfax City Psychiatric Clinic dedicated to providing quality care for children, teens, and adults. Dr. Alok Kumar, M.D., founded NeuroPsych Wellness Center, PC with the mission to provide individualized, effective, and empathetic evaluation and treatment for patients. We understand that the circumstances that often lead to seeking psychiatric help may be sensitive in nature. One of our primary goals is to provide an evaluation, educational materials, and answers to many of your questions. We hope to make your experience at our clinic a positive one.
Types of Mental Health Professionals
Psychiatry and psychology are overlapping professions. Practitioners in both — psychiatrists and psychologists — are mental health professionals. Their area of expertise is the mind — and the way it affects behavior and well-being. They often work together to prevent, diagnose, and treat mental illness. And both are committed to helping people stay mentally well.
Psychiatrists are physicians who completed college and then attended medical school to obtain a Doctor of Medicine degree. They must then complete a residency and/or fellowship in a particular field, such as Psychiatry, Child psychiatry, Addiction psychiatry, Geriatric psychiatry. Because they are also medical doctors, psychiatrists may order lab work or other tests to monitor progress. Psychiatrists also collaborate with other medical doctors, such as pediatricians, neurologists, endocrinologists, and family medicine doctors, in order to provide the best medical care.
Psychiatric or Mental Health Nurses
Some nurses have had special training in providing mental health services. Depending on their level of training and certification, they can evaluate patients for mental illness and provide treatment in the form of psychotherapy. In some states, they are also licensed to prescribe and monitor medications, sometimes independently and sometimes under the supervision of a medical doctor. Nurses also provide case-management services and serve as patient advocates.
Psychologists have also completed post-graduate training, but in a different setting than psychiatrists. They have completed a doctoral program that is non-medical. Psychologists often specialize in administering specialized diagnostic testing as well as therapy in a variety of settings. They do not prescribe medications, but their services are very important.
Therapists and Counselors
Therapists/Counselors have usually completed post-graduate training in a Master’s program, and there are a variety of licensures that can be obtained. The terms “therapist” and “counselor” are often used interchangeably. Therapists and counselors typically focus on providing psychotherapy, or counseling, to individuals, families, couples, or groups, in a variety of settings and specialties.
The most important thing to understand is that Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Psychiatric Nurses, and Therapists all provide an integral service to those who seek their help. They are all considered mental health professionals. Oftentimes, an individual is best served by working with a combination of all, since medication and therapy may each be necessary. In most cases, an individual can start by seeking help from one type of professional and then be referred to another professional if indicated.
Our Providers have Expertise in Treating the following Psychiatric Conditions:
- Anxiety: Generalized Anxiety, Panic Disorder, OCD
- Mood Disorders: Bipolar Disorder, Depression
- Postpartum Anxiety and Postpartum Mood Disorders
- Autism Spectrum Disorders, including Asperger’s Syndrome
- Trauma: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders.
- Sleep Disorders
- TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation) for treatment for depression for patients not able to tolerate medications or not able to improve with treatment.