Preparing for your appointmentBy Mayo Clinic staff
In some cases, a health care provider or other professional may ask you about your mood, thoughts or behavior. Your doctor may bring it up during a routine medical appointment if you seem to be sad, agitated or angry, for instance. Or you may decide to schedule an appointment with your family doctor or primary care provider to talk about your concerns.
In either case, because personality disorders often require specialized care, you may be referred to a mental health provider, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist, for evaluation and treatment. In other cases, you may seek out a mental health provider on your own first.
What you can do
Being an active participant in your care can help your efforts to manage your personality disorder. One way to do this is by preparing for your appointment. This may be especially important when you have a personality disorder that tends to create difficult relationships with medical professionals.
Think about your needs and goals for treatment. Also, write down a list of questions to ask. These may include:
- What type of personality disorder might I have?
- Why can't I get over a personality disorder on my own?
- How do you treat my type of personality disorder?
- Will psychotherapy help?
- Are there medications that might help?
- How long will treatment take?
- What can I do to help myself?
- Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can take home with me?
- What websites do you recommend visiting?
In addition to the questions that you've prepared to ask, don't hesitate to ask questions at any time during your appointment if you don't understand something.
What to expect from your doctor
During your appointment, your doctor or mental health provider is likely to ask you a number of questions about your mood, thoughts, behavior and urges. You may be asked such questions as:
- When did you first notice symptoms?
- How is your daily life affected by your symptoms?
- What other treatment, if any, have you had?
- What have you tried on your own to feel better or control your symptoms?
- What things make you feel worse?
- Have your family members or friends commented on your mood or behavior?
- Have any relatives had a mental illness?
- What do you hope to gain from treatment?
- What medications or over-the-counter herbs and supplements do you take?
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